May 4, 2015 |
ANCHORAGE, Alaska - We climbed gingerly down onto the narrow float of the seaplane that we had ridden in for a soft landing on Lake George, 45 miles northeast of downtown Anchorage. Just off to our right was the soaring Colony Glacier, its craggy azure surface providing a launch pad for polar winds blowing out to greet us. As we balanced on the float, the sound of gunshots echoed through the valley. At least that's what we thought they were, until we watched Humvee-sized blocks of ice calving off the glacier and landing spectacularly in the lake, sending giant plumes of water into the air. Just another day in Alaska, the vaunted "last frontier.
March 1, 2015 |
Lee Wachtstetter, an 86-year-old Florida widow, took her daughter's advice. She sold her five bedroom Fort Lauderdale, Fla.-area home on 10 acres and became a permanent luxury cruise ship resident after her husband died. Mama Lee, as she's known aboard the 11-year-old Crystal Serenity, has been living on the luxe 1,070-passenger vessel longer than most of its 655 crew members - nearly seven years. "My husband introduced me to cruising," she recalled. "Mason was a banker and real estate appraiser and taught me to love cruising.
June 15, 2014 |
I've probably done worse things to our kids than drag them through innumerable ruins - Greek, Roman, Mayan, etc. - but we have been to a lot of ruins. If it was built and fell down, we'll make a detour; if it was built, fell down, buried, and dug up again, we'll book a room. Owing to their proximity to margaritas and warm beaches, we've been to a lot of big-ticket Mayan ruins in particular (Tikal, Tulum, Chichen Itza, Caracol). On a recent cruise, though, we stopped at Costa Maya, Mexico, and discovered, by circumstance and somewhat by accident, a new favorite.
October 7, 2013 |
You can keep your inland towns that rise up over farms or crouch beside a busy river. Give me a city that turns its face to the sea. I like looking out at urban skylines from the deck of a ship. From here, at penthouse height, and out of the tangle of crowds and avenues, you get an almost map-clear view of how a port is shaped. So when I read about a Crystal Cruise ship that left from Venice, nosed into the Aegean and Black Seas, and ended up in Istanbul, I started imagining myself peering down at ancient capitals of trade like a king atop his sailable throne.
September 27, 2013 |
WHEN FLAMES devoured a chunk of West Philadelphia like hell on Earth on May 13, 1985, anyone who was looking for a symbol of hope amid the horror saw Michael Moses Ward. He was just 13 then, and was called Birdie Africa. And he was one of only two people who emerged alive - albeit naked and badly burned - after police dropped a satchel of explosives onto 6221 Osage Ave., a rowhouse that had been the focal point of a nightmarish 12-hour standoff between cops and members of the radical group MOVE.
July 17, 2013 |
GIGLIO, Italy - Salvage crews are working against time to remove the shipwrecked Costa Concordia cruise ship, which is steadily being crushed under its own weight on its granite seabed off the Tuscan island of Giglio. Officials said Monday that if this attempt fails, there won't be a second chance. Nick Sloane, the leader of the operation, said the Concordia has compressed about 10 feet since it came to rest on the rocks Jan. 13, 2012, after ramming a jagged reef during a publicity stunt allegedly ordered by the captain; 32 people were killed.
June 14, 2013 |
LONDON - A glowing Kate Middleton on Thursday christened a gigantic new cruise ship named the Royal Princess. Palace officials said it is planned as her final solo public appearance before she is expected to give birth in mid-July. The Duchess of Cambridge, as she has been formally known since her marriage two years ago to Prince William, used a 4-gallon, $1,500 bottle of Moet and Chandon Champagne to do the job - it was so heavy she couldn't swing it herself, but she cut a ribbon that launched the bottle toward the hull, where it smashed as crowds cheered.
May 30, 2013 |
LINTHICUM, Md. - Passengers whose cruise vacations were cut short by a fire onboard the Grandeur of the Seas arrived back home Tuesday on charter flights from the Bahamas, many praising the crew's response and some already planning their next sailings. Photos of the Royal Caribbean ship show a large area of the stern charred on several decks. Rebecca Killinger of Carlisle said she had no idea how extensive the fire was until the ship got into dock in Freeport, Bahamas. That's in part because of the crew's calm, orderly response, she said.
March 18, 2013 |
Larry Pimentel has seen a lot of water under the bridge. Literally and figuratively. As past chief executive officer of Seabourn, Sea Dream Yacht Club, and Cunard, the veteran travel industry exec has steered some of the most storied names in cruising. So when Royal Caribbean Cruises lured him out of retirement in 2009 to head its new Azamara Club Cruises brand, he demanded carte blanche to create something the cruise industry hadn't seen before. And he has. How is Azamara different?
March 15, 2013 |
PHILIPSBURG, St. Maarten - Passengers from the cruise ship Carnival Dream headed to the airport Thursday instead of sailing home after a generator problem halted their trip in the latest maintenance headache for the world's largest cruise line. The Dream was in St. Maarten on the final stop of a Caribbean cruise when the crew announced it would not be sailing home to Port Canaveral, Fla., because of a mechanical issue with a diesel generator, passengers said. Carnival Cruise Lines said the problem with the backup emergency diesel generator was discovered during a test Wednesday.