With May now behind us, we’re once again taking a look back to see what’s been causing ripples in the cruising world in the last month. It’s been an ambitious few weeks, with both epic, in-depth cruise trips and super-flash new ships being planned for the years to come. Let’s take a closer look at some of the latest news from the giants – and the upstarts! – of the cruise industry…

Azamara to launch in-depth cruising options

The glitz of southeast asia

Azamara Club Cruises is set to up the cruising stakes in 2016, increasing their port offering and staying overnight in over 100 stop-offs. The cruise company’s twin fleet of the Azamara Journey and the Azamara Quest will also be journeying deeper into more unusual destinations, giving fans of ocean travel a more ‘immersive’ experience.

Including Oman and the UAE amongst the list of 44 new ports of call, as well as lining up ‘AzAmazing’ evening tours and more insightful shore excursions from South-East Asia to Mediterranean Europe, it looks like Azamara Club Cruises will be extending their range greatly over the next few years, for what’s still a relatively young cruise company.

53-night cruise coming soon from Royal Caribbean

Bumper cars in Royal Caribbean's Quantum Class

Only a few days after Azamara Club Cruises’ announcement, parent company Royal Caribbean declared their much-anticipated ship-in-waiting Quantum of the Seas will sail a huge 53-night cruise next May. With its first sailings scheduled for later this year, May 2015 will see the mega-ship debark from New York and point its bow towards Shanghai – with a few stops on the way, of course.

Sections of this repositioning cruise will be bookable on their own, with choices ranging from a 16-night transatlantic voyage from New Jersey to Barcelona, to a whirlwind 3-night trip around Malaysia from Singapore. If you’re feeling suitably epic, you could take in the whole lot! With Royal Caribbean’s Quantum class features you can also look forward to sky-diving, on-deck bumper cars and looking down on the ship from the North Star glass capsule ride.

MSC place order for two new €700 million mega-ships

New MSC ships

Finally, MSC Cruises have made a deal with Italian construction company Fincantieri to build two new cruise ships, with ambitious plans for both. Creating a new ‘Seaside’ prototype which will be worth €700 million when complete, the plan is for the new ships to set sail in 2017 and 2018. They will measure a whopping 1,060 feet-long, 135 feet-wide and weigh 154,000 tons each!

Seaside generation ships will also pioneer a 25% fuel-reduction programme, as well as everything from an on-board theatre to a promenade of shops and restaurants that will run the whole way round the vessel.

So what do you think of MSC Cruises’ exciting news? Will you be booking on Quantum of the Seas next year, or are you looking forward to a more intensive cruise experience with Azamara Club Cruises? Share your thoughts on May’s cruise news in the comments below!

Images courtesy of Royal Caribbean, with ‘MSC Cruises’ by Karl Borg, used under Creative Comms licence.

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