MIAMI (November 2, 2006) Ã¯Â¿Â½ Carnival Cruise Lines, the worldÃ¯Â¿Â½s largest cruise operator, will launch San DiegoÃ¯Â¿Â½s first year-round cruise schedule with four- and five-day Baja Mexico voyages aboard the 2,052-passenger Ã¯Â¿Â½Fun ShipÃ¯Â¿Â½ Elation beginning in June 2007.
On this program Ã¯Â¿Â½ the only one of its kind from Southern California Ã¯Â¿Â½ the Elation will depart Thursdays on four-day cruises to Cabo San Lucas and on Mondays and Saturdays on five-day cruises to Cabo San Lucas and Ensenada, on a rotating schedule.
Short cruises are the fastest growing segment of the cruise industry and Carnival pioneered the four- and five-day schedule which fits in perfectly with todayÃ¯Â¿Â½s busy lifestyles. Four-day cruises operating Thursday to Monday provide the ideal Ã¯Â¿Â½long weekend getawayÃ¯Â¿Â½ while five-day voyages offer a comprehensive, multi-port cruise experience all in less than a weekÃ¯Â¿Â½s time.
The Elation will offer 78 voyages annually from San Diego and join the 2,124-passenger Carnival Spirit which has operated seasonal eight-day Mexican Riviera voyages from San Diego since 2004.
With the Elation and Carnival Spirit, Carnival is expected to carry more than 230,000 passengers annually from San Diego Ã¯Â¿Â½ the most of any cruise operator.
Additionally, with the deployment of the Elation, Carnival will be the largest cruise operator on the West Coast and the only cruise line to base three ships year-round in Southern California, with the Paradise and Carnival Pride offering year-round three- to seven-day voyages from Long Beach, Calif.
“The ElationÃ¯Â¿Â½s new four- and five-day cruises from San Diego add a whole new dimension to West Coast cruising. Not only is the port within a dayÃ¯Â¿Â½s drive of millions of residents within the western U.S., San Diego offers a variety of convenient air options with the airport just minutes away from the cruise terminal,Ã¯Â¿Â½ said Bob Dickinson, Carnival president and CEO.
Ã¯Â¿Â½The addition of year-round home-ported cruise service really puts San Diego on the cruising map,Ã¯Â¿Â½ said Robert Ã¯Â¿Â½RockyÃ¯Â¿Â½ Spane, chairman of the board of port commissioners. Ã¯Â¿Â½This decision by Carnival Cruise lines is great for CarnivalÃ¯Â¿Â½s business and great for the regionÃ¯Â¿Â½s economic progress.Ã¯Â¿Â½
New Four- and Five-Day Cruises from San Diego
Beginning June 2, 2007, the 70,000-ton Elation will launch the first year-round cruise program from San Diego encompassing four- and five-day cruises to ports in Baja Mexico.
Four-day cruises feature Cabo San Lucas, one of MexicoÃ¯Â¿Â½s most popular seaside destinations highlighted by its distinctive rock formations, lush landscape and aqua-blue waters popular with snorkelers and scuba divers the world over. Five-day cruises add a stop in Ensenada, located along MexicoÃ¯Â¿Â½s Baja Peninsula and offering gorgeous beaches, a waterfront promenade, and its most famous attraction, the Ã¯Â¿Â½La BufadoraÃ¯Â¿Â½ geyser.
Prior to the start-up of this program, the Elation will operate a special six-day Mexico cruise departing San Diego May 27, 2007. Featured ports on this one-time voyage include Cabo San Lucas, La Paz and Ensenada, each offering magnificent white-sand beaches, diverse cultures, and interesting sites and historical attractions.
Special 15-Day Panama Canal Cruise
The Elation will also sail on a special 15-day Panama Canal cruise departing Port Canaveral, Fla., May 12 and arriving San Diego May 27, 2007. It will mark CarnivalÃ¯Â¿Â½s first Panama Canal cruise since 2004.
In addition to the unforgettable transit of the Panama Canal, the Elation will visit the Caribbean island of Aruba followed by calls at Puntarenas, Costa Rica; and Acapulco, Mazatlan and Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. Numerous shore excursion opportunities, including watersports such as kayaking, snorkeling and scuba diving, as well as myriad golfing and eco-tourism opportunities, will be available during this voyage.
The Elation, which currently operates four- and five-day cruises from Port Canaveral, will continue that program through May 12, 2007, then embark on its Panama Canal cruise.
Signature Ã¯Â¿Â½Fun ShipÃ¯Â¿Â½ Amenities
The 855-foot-long Elation houses a 12,000-square-foot health club, 12 lounges and bars, a jogging track, an Internet cafÃ¯Â¿Â½ and ship-wide wi-fi access, cell phone service, on-board duty-free shopping, a comprehensive golf program, three swimming pools, and CarnivalÃ¯Â¿Â½s signature Ã¯Â¿Â½Twister Waterslide.Ã¯Â¿Â½
Ã¯Â¿Â½Camp CarnivalÃ¯Â¿Â½ and Ã¯Â¿Â½Club O2,Ã¯Â¿Â½ offering expansive facilities and supervised activities for children and teens, respectively, are featured, as well.
Three restaurants, including two elegant main dining rooms with extensive menus and wine lists and a 700-seat poolside eatery featuring 24-hour pizza and self-serve ice cream/frozen yogurt are also featured. A patisserie and complimentary 24-hour stateroom service are also available.
The Elation also houses a wide selection of spacious staterooms and suites, all of which feature the new Ã¯Â¿Â½Carnival Comfort BedÃ¯Â¿Â½ sleep system featuring plush mattresses, luxurious duvets, and high quality linens and pillows.
Pricing and Reservations
Carnival will be accepting reservations for ElationÃ¯Â¿Â½s Panama Canal cruise on Friday, Nov. 3, 2006. Reservations will be accepted for the shipÃ¯Â¿Â½s year-round four- and five-day cruises from San Diego beginning Monday, Nov. 6, 2006.
Prices for the ElationÃ¯Â¿Â½s new four- and five-day cruises from San Diego begin at $339 per person. Rates for the shipÃ¯Â¿Â½s special six-day voyage departing May 27, 2007, from San Diego start at $599 per person, based on double occupancy.
The 15-day Panama Canal cruise is available starting at $799 per person. Special rates for third and fourth guests sailing in the same stateroom, along with round-trip air supplements from a variety of North American gateways, are also available.
For additional information and reservations, contact any travel agent, call 1-800-CARNIVAL or visit carnival.com.