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Summer 2007 | Upcoming gay and lesbian cruises through November 2007

Summer 2007 | Upcoming gay and lesbian cruises through November 2007

The big-ship cruise companies RSVP Vacations (which shares the same parent company as this Web site), Atlantis, Olivia, and R Family Vacations--continue to span the globe from the wondrous Galapagos Islands to the best of the Caribbean and the Mediterranean in 2007 with unique, one-of-a-kind high-seas adventures for gay men and lesbians who love the thrill of arriving at a new port each day and who thrive in a social, flexible vacation environment.

Cruisers in search of more intimate and low-key vacations now have even more options in the form of small-ship cruises from RSVP Vacations, Travelpride, and Romance Voyages, among others. Whatever your style, you'll find a cruise vacation to float your boat. Below is a roundup of upcoming gay and lesbian cruise departures through June 2007. Be sure to check back later in the year for newly announced cruises or for any updates.

RSVP VACATIONS (www.rsvpvacations.com)

Transatlantic cruise aboard Cunard's Queen Mary 2
New York City to London
May 29-June 4, 2007

Two years after launching as "the longest, tallest and grandest ocean liner ever," the Queen Mary 2 is still generating excitement for such sheer "wow" factors as its humongous size, incredible staff-to-passenger ratio, roomy cabins, Todd English restaurant, Canyon Ranch SpaClub, and of course, its noble maritime traditions and unmistakable glamour. RSVP is generating huge buzz in gay travel circles for being the first gay cruise company to charter this highly rated vessel on a classic seven-day transatlantic trip from New York City to Southampton, England. Gay and lesbian cruisers who'd like to experience how the privileged set used to cross the Atlantic in style -- as well as any one who's always dreamed of one week of pure relaxation and partying in a friendly atmosphere -- will adore the chance to join this RSVP cruise on a truly extraordinary cruise liner.

Roman Empire Cruise aboard MS Westerdam
Rome to Rome Aug. 9-19, 2007
This Roman holiday extravaganza sets sail from the romantic Italian capital and drops anchor in thrilling Mediterranean waters, at Naples, Messina, Corfu, Dubrovnik, Venice, Malta, and Salerno. Dipping its toes into four gorgeous Mediterranean countries, RSVP Vacations' thrilling summer cruise offers Italian enchantment and Aegean intrigue as it coasts past the shores of ancient empires. The dazzling MS Westerdam offers spacious staterooms, many with verandahs for private dining and sunning. The Greenhouse Spa and Salon is the fleet's largest and most luxurious spa. Passengers can choose to dine poolside or doll themselves up and feast in the ship's two-story Vista Dining Room, Lido or Pinnacle restaurants.

Alaska Gold Rush Cruise aboard MS Amsterdam
Seattle to Seattle
Sept. 7-14, 2007
RSVP Vacations' Alaska Gold Rush Cruise sets out as so many rugged prospectors did, from the Emerald City, Seattle, and glides out through the Puget Sound, between the Gulf Islands and the imposing Olympic Mountains. It's a breathtaking start to an unforgettable week. Holland America Line's grand five-star MS Amsterdam carries 1,380 passengers through the incomparable scenery of Alaska and the Pacific Northwest. Travel past icebergs and pods of whales and gallop down the gangplank to check out Sitka and Ketchikan, Alaska and the refined city of Victoria, capital of British Columbia. MS Amsterdam boasts state-of-the-art amenities, fine woods, exquisite art and antiques, larger staterooms, a 24/7 Internet Center and a world-class spa and fitness center.

ATLANTIS (www.atlantisevents.com)

Hawaii cruise aboard NCL's new Pride of Hawaii
April 23-30, 2007
Norwegian Cruise Lines pioneered the Hawaii cruise market by being the only cruise line to offer regular inter-island cruises (it now has four ships with all-American staffs sailing through Hawaii year-round, including the gleaming new Pride of America and Pride of Hawaii ships). In April 20007, Atlantis returns to Hawaii by chartering the elegant and five-star resort-like Pride of Hawaii, which features NCL's unique touches such as Freestyle cruising (casual dress code, freedom to eat with whomever you wish, and over 10 different restaurant options including excellent specialty choices), and a state-of-the-art fitness center and spa. Guests will visit five of the most scenic Hawaiian Islands in seven sun-filled days, and enjoy such unforgettable sights such as Mount Kilauea erupting and the dramatic Na Pali Coast of Kauai. This cruise is perfect for Hawaii first-timers as well as those who want to experience these slices of paradise with the energetic and enthusiastic Atlantis team.

Spain, Italy and Greek Isles Cruise aboard Royal Caribbean's Brilliance of the Seas
Barcelona to Athens
Aug. 25-Sept. 2, 2007

Summer temperatures are set to soar with Atlantis' sizzling hot all-gay Mediterranean cruise. Taking in European highlights from bold and sexy Barcelona, stylish Valencia, and party haven Ibiza, to magical Florence and majestic Rome, and finally to spectacular haven Santorini and high-spirited Athens. The sleek, luxe Brilliance of the Seas is designed for adventure, fun and more fun. Eleven-story glass elevators give awe-striking ocean views. A rock-climbing wall, sports court, golf simulator, jogging track and two pools keep everyone fit while out at sea. The state of the art fitness center, with full range of cardio and weight training equipment, gives yet more opportunities for workouts with a view and those huge outdoor pool decks come in handy whether there's sunning, socializing or talent spotting on the schedule.

Atlantis is known for pulling out all the stops when it comes to entertainment and this Mediterranean foray is no exception; comedy, cabaret, Broadway-style shows and dance parties confetti the cruise calendar, and a casino and video bar provide yet more distractions. If you really don't want to check out of that luxurious stateroom, combine this adventure with Atlantis' Athens to Venice cruise (see below.)

Athens to Venice Cruise aboard Royal Caribbean's Brilliance of the Seas
Athens to Venice
Sept. 2-11, 2007

The second, longer leg (nine nights) of Atlantis' two back-to-back Mediterranean cruises features some of the most exotic and historic ports in this ancient and captivating part of the world, visiting the best of the Greek Isles, Turkey and the Adriatic.

Some highlights of this remarkably diverse itinerary include arriving in legendary Istanbul, sailing directly into the romantic Grand Canal in Venice and giving passengers the chance to explore the thrilling gay mecca of Mykonos. Other ports include Rhodes and Ephesus. After experiencing beaches and ruins, it's time to sail on to charming Corfu, more beaches at Split and, finally, to Venice.

The sleek, luxe Brilliance of the Seas is designed for adventure, fun and more fun. Eleven-story glass elevators give awe-striking ocean views. A rock climbing wall, sports court, golf simulator, jogging track and two pools keep everyone fit while out at sea. The state of the art fitness center, with full range of cardio and weight training equipment, gives yet more opportunities for workouts with a view and those huge outdoor pool decks come in handy whether there's sunning, socializing or talent spotting on the schedule.

Atlantis is known for pulling out all the stops when it comes to entertainment and this Mediterranean foray is no exception; comedy, cabaret, Broadway-style shows and dance parties confetti the cruise calendar, and a casino and video bar provide yet more distractions. Dining options are similarly bountiful on board. Open seating, casual dress and no assigned dining times make meals even more enjoyable occasions. If nine days is nowhere near enough, combine this adventure with Atlantis' Spain, Italy and Greek Isles cruise (see above.)

Los Angeles to Los Angeles Mexican Celebration Cruise aboard the Radiance of the Seas
Oct. 13-21, 2007
Atlantis' fifth annual Mexican Riviera Cruise, their most popular cruise, pulls up the gangplank in L.A. and sets a course for Mexico's most luscious beach towns. Along with an overnight stay in gay-friendly Puerto Vallarta, legendary soirees, top entertainers, five superstar DJs and all sorts of onboard shenanigans make this the Pacific's premier party. Ports of call also include Ixtapa, Mazatlan, and Cabo San Lucas.

Radiance of the Seas is a spectacular ship, with expansive glass walls, a rock-climbing wall, two-story spa, two pools, African-themed solarium, mini-golf course, golf simulator, jogging track, full size sports court, fitness center and self-leveling billiard table. A plethora of dining options feature Atlantis' signature open seating, no dress code and no assigned dining times.

OLIVIA (www.olivia.com)

Netherlands in Bloom aboard the MS Sound of Music
Amsterdam to Amsterdam
April 7-14, 2007
Olivia goes Dutch with their Netherlands in Bloom Cruise, a springtime exploration of windmills, tulips and picturesque harbors. Historic ports and vibrant flower fields stretch from lesbian-loved Amsterdam to Rotterdam.
Other ports of call include Brugge and Ghent in Belgium. The new MS Sound of Music offers a European Spa with Turkish baths to really relax cruise goers down to the deliciously slow pace of the trip.

Venice to Rome
Greek Isles Odyssey aboard Holland America's MS Veendam
May 29-June 8, 2007
The luxurious MS Veendam is the setting for Olivia's delicious Mediterranean culinary adventure, taking in the sights, sounds and tastes of Europe. The Ocean Spa and Lido Pool are refreshing downtime options, and live entertainment adds to evening options in the two lounges. As well as visiting Athens, Mykonos, Santorini, and Rhodes, Greece, port calls allow for discovering the magic of the "Pearl of the Adriatic" in Dubrovnik, Croatia and the sandy beaches and historical remains of spectacular Kusadasi, Turkey. Furthermore, the departure from Venice allows for gondola rides under the Bridge of Sighs. Back on board, San Francisco's sweetest chef, Elizabeth Falkner of Citizen Cake is one of the celebrity chefs on board to make the trip even more delectable.

Alaskan Frontiers aboard Holland America's MS Statendam
Vancouver, B.C. to Anchorage, Alaska,
Sept. 9-16, 2007

The ladies of Olivia set out for the far north once again with 2007's Alaskan Frontiers cruise. Embarking from lovely Vancouver B.C., the journey is a stunning one. MS Statendam cruises the Inside Passage, through winding fjords and past waterfalls to Ketchikan, Alaska. Adventuours souls can kayak the waterfront, explore Misty Fjords National Monument and the world's largest collection of totem poles. Other excitements scheduled include seeing Hubbard Glacier, hiking, mushing with a dog team and savoring fresh salmon, smoked over alderwood. Unscheduled wonders might include seeing an iceberg "calf" and sighting bald eagles high above.

MS Statendam boasts state-of-the-art amenities, internet access, a two-tiered dining room, the world-class Ocean spa, fitness center and the Lido Pool.

Under the Tahitian Sun aboard RSS's Paul Gaughin
Papeete to Papeete, French Polynesia
Sept. 15-22, 2007

Vanilla and hibiscus fill the air as Olivia's Tahitian cruise embarks on its adventure through Tahiti. The Society Islands, also known as "Paradise on Earth," the rugged volcanic islands of Raiatea, Taha'a, Bora Bora, Moorea and Tahiti are the sirens of the South Pacific. Balmy days, sultry nights, jagged peaks, emerald rain forests and the company of women beckon would-be passengers on board this delectable cruise. During the week, those on board visit deep bays and reefs, multihued lagoons and deserted motu islands, vanilla plantations and craggy mountains. Black pearls and whale and dolphin sightings are other attractions.

The MS Paul Gaughin was designed specifically to cruise French Polynesia year-round. 50 percent of spacious staterooms have balconies and the vessel offers a watersports marina, three dining venues and an enticing spa. Entertainment takes place in the sultry Connoisseur Club, La Palette piano bar and Le Grand Salon.

San Diego to San Diego
Sunsets of the Mexican Riviera aboard Holland America's MS Oosterdam
Oct. 20-27, 2007
Lily Tomlin vaults on board to celebrate Olivia's 100th trip in some of Mexico's sultriest spots. The cruise takes in quaint corners of Puerto Vallarta, lagoons, stunning sunsets, Cabo San Lucas, idyllic waters, and amazing rock formations. To add amusement to the days at sea, Lily Tomlin is on hand and on stage.

R FAMILY VACATIONS (www.rfamilyvacations.com)

Rosie O'Donnell and her spouse, Kelli, along with business partner Gregg Kaminsky, created a public relations smash -- and opened up an entirely new cruise market -- with the successful launch of their R Family Vacations cruise in July 2004, geared toward gay and lesbian parents and their kids of all ages. Two upcoming cruises will satisfy different tastes in the expanding gay and lesbian family travel market -- a small-ship expedition to the fabled Galapagos Islands in November is complemented by a traditional large-ship winter Caribbean cruise.

Bermuda: Summer 2007 cruise aboard NCL's Norwegian Dawn
New York to New York City
July 7-14, 2007

After a truly awe-inspiring farewell to New York City -- sailing down the island of Manhattan, past the Statue of Liberty and under the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge, shopping, snorkeling, sunning, and socializing are all on the schedule during R Family Vacations' entirely enticing Bermuda summer cruise. Setting the pace with two days on R Family Vacations' private gay and lesbian family-friendly island -- a haven of quaint seaside villages, beautiful pink sand beaches and tropical rain forests -- everyone on board will soon feel far, far away from New York. Barbeques and beach parties, kayaking and windsurfing are just some of the on-island activities. Pool parties, barbeques, Broadway-quality shows, kids' entertainment, seminars, comedy, cabaret and a casino are on offer for sea days. The Norwegian Dawn offers luxurious penthouses with floor-to-ceiling glass doors and private balcony, generous ocean-view staterooms with balcony and comfortable inside staterooms.

TRAVELPRIDE (www.travelpride.com)

Scandinavia and Russia Cruise aboard Le Diamant
Bergen, Norway to Stockholm, Sweden
July 2-11, 2007

Travel Pride's Baltic cruise adventure is a glorious ten-day journey aboard the charming Le Diamant. An intimate ship with just 113 cabins, the sights of the Baltic come into view through cabins' double portholes, picture windows or private balconies. Starting in scenic Bergen, Norway, with its UNESCO-designated Bryggen harbor, the all-gay cruise visits the wealth of treasures in St. Petersburg, the medieval atmosphere of Tallinn, Estonia, cosmopolitan Copenhagen, and Stockholm, as well as Poland's maritime hub Gdansk and stately Helsinki, Finland.

Entertainment on board includes a complimentary open-bar Tea Dance, a DJ and videos and nightly live entertainment.

New Year's Caribbean Cruise aboard Windstar's Wind Spirit
St. Thomas, to St.Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands
Dec. 29, 2007-Jan. 5, 2008

Leave the crowds, cold weather and 2007 behind! Escape on this thrilling cruise that glides from "America's Paradise" St. Thomas, to the fascinating Iles des Saintes, Guadeloupe, lush Montserrat in the British West Indies and picture perfect St. Barts in the French West Indies, before reaching beach haven Jost Van Dyke, chic Virgin Gorda and finally docking back at St. Thomas.

Allowing for a more intimate holiday cruise, the Wind Spirit is an exclusive craft, with only space for 150 discerning passengers. The ship boasts a casino, library, pool bar, lounge, veranda restaurant and main restaurant, as well as a salt-water pool and hot tub, water activity marina and fitness center. Spacious cabins feature flat screen televisions, DVD and CD players, iPod docking stations, wireless Internet access, Egyptian cotton linens and duvets and L'Occitane amenities. All cabins are ocean-view.

ROMANCE VOYAGES (www.romancevoyages.com)

Galapagos Islands aboard Celebrity Xpedition
June 15-25, 2007
Romance Voyages shares with Travelpride a desire to create more intimate and culturally enriching cruise vacations for gay men. In past years, Romance has chartered ships for specialized itineraries that the big cruises can't go to, such as river cruises on the Rhine and the Yangtze in China. In June 2007, gay ecotourists and fans of small ships can join this luxury Celebrity Xpedition cruise to the awe-inspiring Galapagos Islands -- home to more than 1,900 species of unique plants and animals. This active and educational cruise is the ideal way to experience nature's wonders from the comfortable base of a high-end cruise ship. Pre- and post-cruise stays in Quito, Ecuador, will allow guests to experience the colonial history and architecture of the capital.

QUAERO VOYAGES (www.quaerovoyages.com)

A new name on the gay and lesbian cruise horizon is Canadian-based Quaero Voyages.

Legendary Danube 2007 River Cruise aboard Amadeus Waterways' MS Amalegro
Prague, Czech Republic to Budapest, Hungary
Oct. 4-16, 2007

Focusing on "cultural interchange," meaning that participants will get an opportunity to meet people from their community in the various cities, Quaero is set to offer an appealing alternative to some more socially skewed cruises on the market. Sightseeing tours will address the history of gay rights, visit galleries and museums that have a particular gay or lesbian bent, and enjoy entertainment in the same vein.

The Legendary Danube 2007 River Cruise begins with three nights in Prague, Czech Republic, followed by a coach tour through the Bohemian Forest to Nuremberg, Germany where the ship will be docked. The MS Amalegro will visit some of the most beautiful towns in Europe including Regensburg, Passau and Durnstein, Germany and Bratislava, Slovakia. A highlight will no doubt be three nights in Vienna, the very gay-friendly Austrian city of music. The cruise winds up in the imperial city of Budapest, Hungary, where the final two nights with shore excursions and a farewell Hungarian dinner.

The luxurious, brand new MS Amalegro dips her toes in the water for the first time in March 2007. This luscious river cruise ship promises a long list of amenities for its 150 passengers; from exquisitely decorated cabins equipped with flat-screen TV and Internet access and French balconies on the top two decks, to an elevator, a sun deck with walking track, a whirlpool and bicycles to explore the ports-of-call on your own.

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