LONDON, November 16, 2011 /PRNewswire/ --
Cruise Critic Announces 2011 U.K. Cruise Awards
The Geordie capital of Newcastle is the surprise winner in the 2011 U.K. Editors' Picks cruise awards, presented by the influential cruise news and reviews Web site Cruise Critic® (http://www.cruisecritic.co.uk). The port was named the "Best U.K. Port of Call" in the prestigious annual awards, which honour top cruise lines, ships and ports.
Newcastle's Port of Tyne has benefited from the boom in the British cruise business -- in particular, round-Britain itineraries. According to its latest figures, visitors arriving through the cruise terminal are worth some 44m pounds Sterling to the North East's visitor economy and help to sustain about 1,400 jobs in the tourism sector. For 2012, a record 41 cruise ships are expected to visit.
Explaining why the Port of Tyne was selected as the best U.K. port for visitors, Cruise Critic's editor in chief, Carolyn Spencer Brown, said, "Newcastle has some delightful areas -- the Quayside, superb museums, restaurants and galleries - and is convenient as both a port of embarkation and a port of call. The city's charms also extend to the countryside, with a range of diversions from castles to cathedrals and the gorgeous scenery of the Pennines.
Britain's largest and busiest cruise port, Southampton, was once again named "Best U.K. Departure Port" for its continued growth and commitment to the cruise industry.
The Cruise Critic Editors' Picks Awards celebrate excellence in cruise travel and are selected by a panel of cruise journalists. This year, there are 25 different categories embracing a wide variety of cruises, ships and onboard features and attractions available to U.K. travellers.
The 2011 categories have a distinct gastro theme with awards for "Best Dining," "Best Alternative Restaurant," "Best Buffet," "Best Wine List" and "Best Bar." Awards were widely distributed among the cruise lines offering itineraries for U.K. travellers, but Oceania picked up three top honours-- Best "Best Buffet" and "Best Suites," both for Oceania Marina, and "Best Dining." for the whole fleet.
Cunard reflagged its ships to Bermuda last month, but remains beloved by British cruisers and also took home three top awards -- "Best Itineraries," "Best for Entertainment" and "Best Alternative Restaurant" for The Verandah on its newest ship, Queen Elizabeth. P&O Cruises took top honours for the line's family-friendly ship, Ventura, which was named "Best for First-Timers," and "Best Cruise Ship Bar" was awarded to The Glass House.
Talking about the Cruise Critic U.K. Awards for 2011, Carolyn Spencer Brown said, "The U.K. cruise industry continues to grow year-on-year, despite the tough economy, due in part to the exceptional standard of service and hospitality provided by the cruise lines that keep customers coming back time and time again. That's something the industry as a whole can be proud of. With these awards, however, we aim to honour the cruise lines that deserve credit in specific areas, where we believe they truly excel, such as dining or onboard activities."
The annual Cruise Critic U.K. Editors' Picks Awards complement the Cruisers' Choice Awards, which are announced in the spring and highlight the cruise ships which receive the highest ratings from reviews posted on Cruise Critic.
For the full list of winners, as well as information on why each award was given to a particular line, ship or port, please go to: http://www.cruisecritic.co.uk/news/news.cfm?ID=4660
2011 Cruise Critic U.K. Editors' Picks Awards Best New Ship Carnival -- Carnival Magic Best New River Ship Uniworld -- River Antoinette Best for Luxury Seabourn Cruise Line Best for First-Timers P&O Cruises -- Ventura Best for Cruising with Kids Royal Caribbean Best Itineraries Cunard Line Best for Adventure Star Clippers Best River Cruise Line Viking River Cruises Best Value for Money Voyage of Discovery Best for Fly-Cruises Thomson Cruises Best for Dining Oceania Cruises Best Alternative Restaurant Cunard -- Verandah Restaurant (Queen Elizabeth) Best Buffet Oceania Cruises -- Marina Best for Entertainment Cunard Line Best for Healthy Cruising Celebrity Cruise Line Best for Solos Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines Best Suites Oceania Cruises -- Marina Best Cabins Holland America Line Best Shore Excursions Noble Caledonia Best for Guest Speakers Voyages to Antiquity Best for Honeymoons Princess Cruises Best for Wine-Lovers Celebrity Cruises -- Solstice-Class Ships Best Cruise Ship Bar P&O Cruises -- The Glass House (Azura) Best U.K. Port of Call Newcastle Best U.K. Departure Port Southampton
(These are the U.K. awards, the Cruise Critic U.S. awards can be viewed at Cruise Critic's U.S.-based sister site, http://www.cruisecritic.com/news/news.cfm?ID=4659)
About Cruise Critic (http://www.cruisecritic.co.uk):
Cruise Critic is an online cruise guide hosting the world's largest online cruise community, boasting more than 700,000 members. It also offers 70,000 cruise reviews of more than 380 cruise ships. Each month, nearly 2 million people visit the site to read cruise reviews and find information on planning a cruise, or to access the forums where they swap advice and stories with other cruisers.
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