Seattle, November 13, 2008 â€” Windstar Cruises, which operates a three-ship fleet of luxury yachts that explore the hidden harbors and secluded coves of the worldâ€™s most treasured destinations, is offering cell phone service at sea on Wind Star and Wind Spirit. Wind Surf already offers this service.
Wind Star will have the service available on the Nov. 29, 2008, 14-day Panama Canal cruise from Barbados to Puerto Caldera. The network will be installed on Wind Spirit during an upcoming dry dock and be ready on the April 18, 2009, 7-day cruise from Lisbon to Barcelona.
â€œWe are pleased to provide this service to our guests,â€ said Diane Moore, President of Windstar Cruises. â€œIt allows them the convenience of staying in touch with family, friends and business associates while enjoying their cruise.â€
Windstar has contracted with On-Waves Ehf for a roaming network which supports GSM and CDMA technology on board the ships. Guests will be able to make and receive calls while at sea using their own mobile phone. Text messaging, GPRS and EDGE data service is also available. Guests will need to check that their phone is enabled for International roaming with their cellular carrier, and that their carrier is one of the 200 carriers that have roaming agreements with On-Waves Ehf. Charges will be determined by the guestâ€™s cellular service carrier and will appear on their regular monthly cell phone bill.
In order to maintain Windstarâ€™s atmosphere of casual elegance, guests will be advised of cell phone courtesy guidelines. Cell phone service is intended primarily for guest use in the privacy of their stateroom. Talking on cell phones will not be permitted in public areas such as dining areas or lounges, and guests will be asked to set their phoneâ€™s ringer to vibrate when in public areas.
A leader in defining the small ship luxury cruise experience for more than 20 years, Windstar has won the allegiance of a new generation of contemporary travelers who appreciate the lineâ€™s luxurious accommodations, alternative dining venues, diversity of shore excursions, complimentary water sports program and deluxe spa facilities. The completed multi-million dollar Degrees of Difference enhancements on all three ships focused on structural and technical operations along with upgrades to guest areas, remodeled bathrooms in staterooms and an expanded beauty salon and spa. Other enhancements include Bose SoundDock speakers for Apple iPod Nanos, wireless Internet, flat screen televisions, luxury linens and mattresses as well as Lâ€™Occitane amenities.
Windstarâ€™s award-winning reputation for sophisticated, yet casual elegance has been recognized by some of the most notable names in the travel world. Windstar was recently awarded â€œFavourite Small-Ship Cruise Lineâ€ in the U.K.â€™s CondÃ© Nast Travellerâ€™s 2008 Readersâ€™ Travel Awards. Windstar received the highest score of any cruise line in the poll and was also only one of three cruise lines that made CondÃ© Nast Travellerâ€™s list of the â€œTop 100 of the Best the Travel World has to Offer.â€ Celebrated Living, American Airlinesâ€™ prestigious publication for first class passengers, named Windstar Cruises â€œBest Small-Ship/Mid-Ship Cruise Lineâ€ on their 2008 Platinum List for the second time in a row. Readers of Porthole Cruise Magazine awarded Windstar â€œMost Romantic Cruise Lineâ€ and â€œBest Tall Shipâ€ in the 10th Annual Readersâ€™ Choice Awards. Windstar has also earned top honors in Travel + Leisureâ€™s Worldâ€™s 2008 Best Awards and was lauded among â€œThe Worldâ€™s Best Small Shipsâ€ by CondÃ© Nast Traveler.
About On-Waves Ehf
On-Waves is a pioneer and leader in the field of maritime mobile phone services. On-Waves is owned by SIMINN, Icelandâ€™s national telephony provider, formerly known as Iceland Telecom and headquartered in Reykjavik, Iceland. With over 1,200 employees and over 500 international roaming agreements, SIMINN has been providing roaming services to the maritime market since early 2003. SIMINN has secured extensions of its terrestrial roaming agreements into the maritime domain, fully compliant with GSM Association and CDMA Development Group standards and regulations on maritime roaming. On-Waves carefully tailors its services to the specific needs of each segment of the maritime community in close collaboration with clients and technology partners. On Waves currently provides service to over 50 vessels, both cruise ships and large ferries, operating in Europe, North and South American and the Asia-Pacific. On Waves also provides mobile phone service to commercial merchant marine vessels.
About Windstar Cruises
Windstar Cruises operates three sailing yachts known for their pampering without pretense and their ability to visit the hidden harbors and secluded coves of the worldâ€™s most treasured destinations. Carrying just 148 to 312 guests, the luxurious ships of Windstar cruise to nearly 50 nations, calling at 100 ports throughout Europe, the Caribbean and the Americas. For more information including rates and itineraries contact a professional travel agent or call Windstar at 1-800-258-7245. Visit Windstar Cruises online at www.windstarcruises.com.