Hapag-Lloyd Cruises to Offer Guests Established Talent and Young Stars During the Ocean Sun and Stella Maris Classical Music Festivals at Sea 

The highest ranked cruise ship in the world, according to the 2012 Berlitz Guide to Cruising and Cruise Ships[1] Hapag-Lloyd Cruises’ MS EUROPA is offering guests two world-class music festivals in 2012. The “Ocean Sun Festival,” the only classical music festival on the High Seas, will feature internationally acclaimed classical music stars performing on board, as well as exclusive concerts at historical sites ashore. Additionally, the “Stella Maris“ International Vocal Competition will bring together up-and-coming young singers from the most renowned opera houses in the world to perform and compete on board a Middle East and Africa itinerary. These two music cruises are the highlights of a total of nine music cruises aboard the EUROPA in 2012.

Now in its sixth year, the “Ocean Sun Festival” has been compared to the prestigious Festival del Sole in Napa Valley, California and the Tuscan Sun Festival in Italy. For an added dimension to this musical experience, international music critics will offer lectures along the route. On board, “Ocean Sun Festival” guests will experience the breathtaking violinist Janine Jansen, the aspiring pianist Igor Levit and renowned soprano vocalist Marlis Petersen. This musical voyage continues ashore with the soloists joining the Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra in Bergen, Norway. While the classical music concerts are the highlights of this itinerary, the EUROPA will glide through the picturesque Norway fjords, with stops in the charming and multifaceted cities of Bergen and Oslo. This 12-day itinerary from August 12-24, 2012, starts at $6,670 per person/based on double occupancy for a suite.

In cooperation with the prestigious international opera houses, the EUROPA will also be hosting their fourth annual classical music competition at sea, “Stella Maris.”
Under the direction of Canadian tenor Michael Schade, a jury of famous personalities in the classical music field will judge the top talent represented by international opera houses. The distinguishing feature of “Stella Maris” is that the audience determines the winner of the cash prize worth €15,000. This prize, generous compared to others in the world of classical music, is provided by Hapag-Lloyd Cruises. The jury will decide on the recipients of the additional prizes, which include: a guest engagement at an international opera house, a concert, and a test recording with Deutsche Grammophon. The competition will occur on board an 18-day Middle Eastern and Africa cruise through the Indian Ocean from November 7-25, 2012, making stops in Dubai, Oman, the Seychelles and Madagascar this November. The itinerary starts at $9,150 per person/based on double occupancy for a suite.

For information on these itineraries visit www.hl-cruises.com or call one of Hapag-Lloyd Cruises’ sales agencies below.


In the USA and Canada:
Air Travel Marketing Services, Inc. 1-800-888-0200
Euro Lloyd Travel Group, Inc. 1-800-782-3924
Kartagener Associates, Inc. 1-877-445-7447

About the EUROPA:
The EUROPA is the first “all-suites” cruise ship, with staterooms that are never less than 290 square feet, 80% of them having their own veranda, assuring privacy and relaxation. The EUROPA offers guests the largest space per passenger, as well as one of the highest staff passenger ratios, with 280 staff members for max. 408 guests. New to the EUROPA, Dieter Mueller became the first award-winning chef to open his own gourmet restaurant onboard. He’s personally on board 70 days a year. Also recently launched, the EUROPA’s “Baby Welcome Package” offering baby care products and baby food for passengers traveling with infants. The EUROPA will be visiting over 20 countries in 2012, as part of her international (German/English) itineraries.
[1] According to the 2012 Berlitz Guide to Cruising and Cruise Ships

Copyright 2012 By Punchin International. All Rights Reserved.

Experience Time Travel with Abercrombie & Kent in Morocco from $2,380

Africa; Morocco; Rabat; Mausoleum of Mohammed V

Travel back to a time of aromatic mint tea served in cool courtyards and sun-drenched bazaars overflowing with handmade jewelry and colorful tagines on Abercrombie & Kent’s Morocco: Imperial Cities, a nine-day small group escorted journey from just $2,380. With a history stretching back almost 10,000 years, Morocco was crisscrossed by Roman legions, Berber caravans and Muslim scholars.  The country’s imperial cities: Rabat, Fez, Meknes and Marrakech, each served as the capital under different ruling dynasties. Together they present a vibrant mix of centuries-old traditions with 21st-century comforts always within reach.

Morocco: Imperial Cities is a new Abercrombie & Kent itinerary for 2012 which explores the country’s diverse cultures and historic influences with the same standard of service, but fewer inclusions, than other A&K journeys.  In Rabat, visit Oudaya Kasbah, built on a bluff overlooking the Atlantic Ocean; the design of the gate is considered one of the most beautiful in the Moorish world. Once inside, explore a delightful Andalusia-style garden, complete with a fountain and sweet-scented orange trees. Step back into the Middle Ages in Fez el-Bali (“Old Fez”), one of the most ancient and untouched city neighborhoods in the world.  The city of Meknes was built in the seventeenth century by powerful sultan Moulay Ismail to rival the court of French contemporary Louis XIV. Immerse yourself in the diversity of Morocco’s present-day culture as you stroll through the souks of Marrakech’s famous medina and renowned Djemaa el-Fna Square, home to travelling musicians and hypnotic snake charmers. Visit the 12th-century Menara Garden and Jardin Majorelle, designed in 1924 by French artist Jacques Majorelle and restored by designer Yves Saint Laurent.

Guaranteed departures of Morocco: Imperial Cities ($2,380 per person, double occupancy) are led by an experienced Abercrombie & Kent Tour Director with expert local guides. Choice of departure dates:Jun 20-28, Jul 4-12, Aug 22-30, 2012.

– 1 night in Casablanca at Le Royal Mansour Méridien

– 2 nights in Fez at Sofitel Fes Palais Jamai

– 3 nights in Marrakech at Sofitel Marrakech Lounge & Spa

– Low single supplement: $890

Local Connections, Global Reach

Abercrombie & Kent relies on deep roots and long-established relationships in Morocco to offer a degree of access and insight that no other company can match. An office in Marrakech provides travellers with seamless service 24 hours a day, 7 days a week with the convenience, service and security of a U.S.-based company for a worry-free travel experience.

Call 800.554.7094 to speak with a destination specialist or go to www.abercrombiekent.com for more details.

Experience Morocco on World of A&K  ON ThisYoutube Video


Africa; Morocco; Fez; Medina



Copyright 2012 By Punchin International. All Rights Reserved.


Download photos at: http://portfolio.abercrombiekent.com/res/sites/Morocco