Cruising for Anthony has been in the blood since he was 8 years. Twenty one years later, he has amassed 41 cruises and has sailed to some of the most far flung destinations in the world. Here at Cruisemarsh, we have the opportunity to ask him some questions about his experiences and why he loves cruising so much.
Cruising has been such a big part of your life, how did you get into cruising and what cruise ship did you first cruise on?
“Well, it was my late grandfather that initially got me into cruising. He had sailed many times before I was even born and was interested in all things maritime. He started his cruising adventures on the Queen Mary in 1967 and subsequently he kindled an interesting in cruising. That I think has been passed on down throughout the family and I am now the one that is well and truly smitten with all things cruising. The first cruise ship I sailed on was Oriana in 1995. It was a 16 night Mediterranean cruise and of course was part of her maiden season with P&O. I absolutely loved it! I was only 8 at the time but fell instantly in love with cruising. I enjoyed going to the kids clubs on board and taking part in the activities, it was all such fun. Therefore family holidays would be a yearly cruise and each cruise I went on, the more I was in love with cruising and now today I follow the industry very closely and cruise as much as I financially can.”
Do you have a favourite cruise ship?
“My all time favourite ship is Cunard’s former Queen Elizabeth 2 (QE2). She had such charm, character and atmosphere about it, it was like going back in time. The prestige of sailing on such an esteemed ship was a huge honour. Modern cruise ship wise, I’d guess Royal Princess is my favourite. After sailing on her with Assistant Editors of Cruisemarsh, Jordan and Christian, we had such a great time. Instantly fell in love with the ship, the layout, the crew and staff. She truly is a wonderful ship and would love to sail on her again in the future.”
On the flipside, do you have a least favourite cruise ship?
“Mmmmmm…. that is a difficult question. I don’t think I can honestly say I have a least favourite ship as such. I have been lucky to have never had any real negative experiences on the cruises that I have been on. For facilities and activities on board, I would suppose my least favourite ship would probably be the former Regal Princess, now Pacific Dawn. For the size of ship, I was disapppointed with the layout of the ship and what it had to offer, however it was the best cruise I have been on in terms of destinations as it cruised across the Pacific to Japan from Hawaii.”
Large or small cruise ships; which do you prefer?
“Generally speaking, I do prefer the larger cruise ships. However, it would not put me going off sailing on a smaller ship if the itinerary was right. I have sailed on small ships such as Voyager, Minerva and Marco Polo. They can definitely get into the smaller ports that the larger ships cannot. That is a definite advantage.
However the lack of amenities on the smaller ships is something of a concern. I like to be active and I feel the smaller ships provide less activities to keep you occupied. I have got into the routine of enjoying the production shows on the larger ships and is always a pleasure to watch a show at the theatre after dinner. A walk around deck too is fantastic and of course one my hobbies is swimming and on the bigger ships there is better pool facilities. Generally too, the larger ships sail better in rough conditions, however I don’t see rough sea conditions as an obstacle and would still sail on a smaller ship if the conditions were a tad bit rough. Each have their own pluses and minuses and I suppose is dependent on the situation and itinerary really.”
Favourite destination visited?
“I have been lucky to have visited quite an array of destinations so it is really quite difficult to actually pick a favourite destination. Although there are two areas that I really have enjoyed cruising to which has visited some fabulous ports of call. Cruising to Egypt and visiting the historical sites of Ancient Egypt such as the Valley of the Kings and the Pyramids in Giza were a lifelong ambition for me to visit and I can proudly say I have visited them. Sailing across the Pacific to Japan is also been special for me and for me to have the chance to visit such a far flung destination was absolutely fantastic. Japan is such a fantastic country with friendly people and wonderfully scenery, It is an experience that will live with me til my dying day.”
What’s on the bucket list?
“New York, Australia, Alaska and New Zealand are the top 4 places that I would really love to visit. Hopefully I will have the opportunity to visit these destinations at some point in the future.”
Finally, do you think cruising will continue to grow in popularity?
“Yes, I do. The signs suggest that growth is continuing and that demand is increasing too with a number of new cruise ships on the order books. It is fantastic to think that more people are turning to cruising to experience seeing the world. For me, it is the only real way to see the world. There is a cruise for everybody as well and that’s what makes the industry so diverse. It is no longer a vacation for the very rich and elderly.
It is more of an open market in which multi generational families can vacation with each other, young couples can experience the joys of experiencing new destinations and above all it is affordable. Although people percieve it as being an expensive type of vacation, when you factor in what is included in the price, compared to that of a landbased holiday, people are pleasantly surprised and therefore embrace the idea of cruising. It is only going to go from strength to strength and I am very pleased that the future of cruising is in a healthy position and I am so glad that people are choosing to vacation on what I think is the best vacation type out there. Hopefully it’s a case of ‘Carry on Cruising’!”
Anthony’s next cruise will be on Ventura this coming October!