Casual cruise line Ocean Village may be about to disappear at the end of 2010, but it's not going to go quietly.
Although one of the line's two ships will be transferred to new ownership in Australia later this year, the original Ocean Village will continue to provide "cruises for people who don't do cruises" for another year.
A TV advertising campaign featuring the voice of Sarah Parish (right), star of BBC series Mistresses, launches next week to push the ship's winter season in the Caribbean, with fares starting at £599 a week for two-week cruises from Barbados.
And next summer's final Mediterranean season has been announced: seven different itineraries will include five ports which have not been visited by the ship before - Messina in Sicily, Marmaris in Turkey, La Spezia in Italy, Cagliari on the south coast of Sardinia, and Toulon in France.
Fares start at £699 for a week in the eastern Med, including flights, and there's a £200 discount for passengers who prefer to arrange their own flights.
With an average age of 45, Ocean Village passengers are a good 10 years younger than the cruising stereotype.
There are no formal dress codes, no set dining times and no fixed seating plans and no end of choice. By day, passengers can chill out beside one of two pools and relax in the hot tubs on deck. Ashore, they can opt to join activities from yachting and quad biking to swimming with dolphins.
By night, there are up to eight bars to choose from and four onboard restaurants, including celebrity chef James Martins' Bistro and 24 hour buffet dining.
There's a dedicated youth team offering a supervised 'Base Camp' for kids, and a night nursery, meaning Mum and Dad can make the most of the nightly entertainment - everything from tribute acts, live bands and urban dance shows to acrobatic laser spectaculars out on the open decks.
And if he's a popular success this year, no doubt Basil Brush will be back, along with Bagpuss and Paddington Bear, to keep the kids happy.
Source: John Honeywell / Mirror.co.uk
Results 1 to 10 of 17
23rd June 2009, 04:32 PM #1
OV prepares for final season's cruising
24th June 2009, 12:05 PM #2
Ventura is no replacement for Ocean Village
Many former passengers are resentful that these ships with their friendly, warm atmosphere and casual 'laid back' cruising are being put out of their reach. P&O's idea to replace them with the Ventura ( and Oceana soon) is so far not working. I went on the Ventura this month and was on OV1 three times last year. The arrogance and stand offishness of the American theatre company contracted from Jean Ann Ryan Productions on Ventura is in stark contrast to the warmth and friendliness of the Freedom2Move company from MBP Productions on the Ocean Village ships. Also what was virtually an all British production (apart from the acrobats) Ventura is all North American bar 3 people. Jobs in entertainment are hard enough to come by in the UK without P&O, who maintain that they are British providing holidays for the British (despite being owned by Carnival), giving jobs to American companies. They would not do that the other way round ! I am not going to write a review of Ventura here but suffice to say that it is not a happy ship and the passengers can feel that. Once OV improved their buffet food by the end of last year they can say they offer a much better product than Ventura with more interesting itineraries.
There's a lot to be said for the Ocean Village concept.
Short or no lines at the buffet, for a start!
Wife and I did Ocean Village Two twice last year
and she longs to return!
Last edited by Aplmac, Barbados; 24th October 2009 at 12:33 AM.
Last edited by Aplmac, Barbados; 22nd July 2009 at 01:59 PM.
24th July 2009, 06:18 PM #5
11th August 2009, 01:22 PM #7Ship's Cook Member
- Join Date
- Aug 2009
I suggest the OV disgruntled try freestyle on the NCL ships... we found NCL to be every bit as laid back for those that wanted it to be as OV - though it is more expensive onboard.
23rd October 2009, 11:09 PM #9Ship's Cat Member
- Join Date
- Oct 2009
Having just had my first cruise experience on Ocean Village Two I was gutted to hear that it was also going to be my last! I loved every second of it and wanted to have another cruise with them as soon as I could afford it lol
I was speaking to one of the reps in my local Thomas Cook branch when we got back and she told me they were thinking of going with NCL as an alternative to OV.