Sydney,
21
December
2022
|
00:20 AM
America/New_York

Norwegian Cruise Line Marks Return to Australian Waters After Three Years

All-New Norwegian Spirit debuts Down Under following her USD$100m revitalization

Cruise line gives back, supporting Australian growers, suppliers and launching the Brand’s first ever beach-clean up shore excursion 

Norwegian Cruise Line (NCL), the innovator in global cruise travel with a 56-year history of breaking boundaries, has made its long-awaited return to Australian waters after three years. Norwegian Spirit sailed into spectacular Sydney Harbour today for the very first time with guests from over 20 nationalities on board – including from the U.S., Canada, U.K., Germany, Australia and New Zealand – while showcasing her magnificent USD$100m bow-to-stern revitalisation – the most expensive and extensive ever undertaken by NCL.

Norwegian Spirit’s maiden arrival marks a significant milestone for the Australian cruise industry’s comeback, as well as the chance for Australian cruisers to experience NCL’s unique Freestyle Cruising concept from their doorstep, with a choice of eight open-jaw sailings between December 2022 and March 2023 from Sydney and Auckland exploring destinations like Napier, Tauranga and Fiordland in New Zealand together with Melbourne, Burnie and Eden in Australia. Norwegian Spirit will then return for a second homeporting season from Sydney and Auckland beginning December 2023.

“We’re thrilled to finally welcome Norwegian Spirit to Australia - she is well and truly worth the wait,” said Ben Angell, Vice President and Managing Director NCL, APAC. “We know Australians love our contemporary, laidback style of cruising, as well as the outstanding value only an NCL cruise can offer. Importantly, we’re delighted to be part of an industry that contributes $5 billion to the Australian economy each year.”

Ben Angell, Vice President and Managing Director, Asia-Pacific, Norwegian Cruise Line

We’re thrilled to finally welcome Norwegian Spirit to Australia - she is well and truly worth the wait. We know Australians love our contemporary, laidback style of cruising, as well as the outstanding value only an NCL cruise can offer. Importantly, we’re delighted to be part of an industry that contributes $5 billion to the Australian economy each year.

Ben Angell, Vice President and Managing Director, Asia-Pacific, Norwegian Cruise Line

In Sydney to welcome Norwegian Spirit, NCL President and CEO Harry Sommer said, “Australia and New Zealand are incredibly important markets for us, both as a source market and a destination, and we are committed to this region for the long term. I’m thrilled to be here in person to celebrate our return to Australia after a three-year hiatus, and to join the festivities as Norwegian Spirit spends an extended overnight visit in Sydney before she sets sail on her Christmas cruise tomorrow!”

NSW Minister for Transport, Veterans and Western Sydney David Elliott said “NSW is Australia’s capital of cruise. Prior to the pandemic Australia was the fastest growing cruise market per population in the world, with NSW leading the sector. Cruise is a $5 billion industry in Australia with NSW claiming the lions share of the economic benefits. With a better summer cruise season than expected well underway,  it is exciting to now have Norwegian Cruise Line returning to our shores after a three-year hiatus. This strong return of cruise is great news for holidaying Australian families as well as our tourism industry in NSW, supporting local businesses, suppliers and our State’s economy.”

Harry Sommer, President and Chief Executive Officer, Norwegian Cruise Line

Australia and New Zealand are incredibly important markets for us, both as a source market and a destination, and we are committed to this region for the long term. I’m thrilled to be here in person to celebrate our return to Australia after a three-year hiatus, and to join the festivities as Norwegian Spirit spends an extended overnight visit in Sydney before she sets sail on her Christmas cruise tomorrow!

Harry Sommer, President and Chief Executive Officer, Norwegian Cruise Line

Guests on board Norwegian Spirit’s maiden voyage from Sydney to Auckland, departing 22 December, have the opportunity to join a brand-first experience to ‘give back’ in the coastal community of Eden on NSW’s Sapphire Coast, where NCL’s new partner organisation, Take 3 for the Sea, will host a special complimentary beach clean-up shore excursion. Guests keen to get into the giving spirit will head onshore on 23 December with an expert Take 3 for the Sea guide, removing rubbish from a picturesque beach in support of the organisation’s ambitious goal to remove 50 million pieces of plastic from the world’s oceans by 2025. The new shore excursion initiative reflects NCL and Take 3 for the Sea’s shared commitment to reducing single-use plastics, with guests encouraged to ‘take 3’ whenever they go ashore in Australia and New Zealand during Norwegian Spirit’s maiden local cruise season.

A smaller ship at 2,032 guest capacity (dual occupancy), Norwegian Spirit is packed full of features and quite unlike any other ship sailing in the region. Completely redesigned in 2020 from bow-to-stern with the adult cruiser in mind, the ship boasts brand-new features like the Thermal Suite in the sought-after Mandara Spa, including a spa, sauna, shower experience and heated-tile loungers gazing over ocean views; the opulent Spice H20 pool retreat which transforms into a cocktail lounge and open-air nightclub when the sun goes down, and the finest contemporary Italian fare at the striking Onda by Scarpetta. No one does entertainment like NCL and Norwegian Spirit is no exception, from Broadway-style pop-country spectacular, Blazing Boots to the magic, acrobatics and dance of Elements.

With half the ship’s 912 crew members dedicated to delivering exceptional quality food and beverage, guests will enjoy a complete destination immersion experience with dishes tailored to the destinations visited, such as roasted rack of lamb and grilled barramundi. Supporting local growers and suppliers, guests can also expect to enjoy a vast variety of quality, locally sourced produce, including all barramundi, lamb, eggs, milk, yoghurt and fresh fruit and vegetables, such as berries, pineapples, bananas, lettuce and capsicum. The well-stocked local wine selection includes Australian and New Zealand favourites like Wynn’s Coonawarra and Wolf Blass from the Barossa Valley, 19 Crimes from South Eastern Australia, Matua Marlborough from New Zealand and Georg Jensen Hallmark Cuvee from Tasmania. Meanwhile local favourites such as Vegemite, Weet Bix, Milo, Four’n Twenty sausage rolls and Fountain mint sauce will ensure Australian and New Zealand cruisers feel at home while sailing on Norwegian Spirit.

Click here to learn more about Norwegian Spirit’s local cruises in 2022, 2023 and 2024.

For more information or to book a cruise with NCL, please contact a travel professional; call NCL in Australia on 1300 255 200 or in New Zealand on 0800 969 283; or visit www.ncl.com.