CruiseAfter China, Explorer Dream will head south to Australia and New Zealand.

A new Dream ship is ready to go exploring

Genting 190415
Explorer Dream is ready for its next adventure.
After a US$56-million-dollar transformation, the newest family member of Dream Cruises, Explorer Dream, has finally arrived and received the blessing from her godmother, Grace Chen, one of China’s most influential fashion innovators. 

Formerly SuperStar Virgo of Dream Cruises’ sister brand Star Cruises, the vessel is the fastest cruise ship in Asia Pacific, and now brings a premier experience with a unique combination of Eastern and Western cultures. 

Kent Zhu, president of Genting Cruise Lines, said during the ship inaugural ceremony in Shanghai that Explorer Dream would set the ground for Genting’s future expansion around the globe by stepping into new destinations, new markets and with new experiences, hence its name, Explorer Dream. 

With 928 staterooms, the vessel features new facilities including The Palace, Dream Cruises’ signature, luxury private enclave with exclusive butler concierge service, entertainment and leisure spaces, including the virtual reality ESC Experience Lab, Zodiac Theatre and the Palm Court observatory lounge, and additional world-class dining experiences in Seafood Grill by Mark Best, Mozzarella Ristorante & Pizzeria and Umi Uma Sushi & Teppanyaki. 

Those who have already sailed with SuperStar Virgo say the differences are well worth the investment. Koh Chong Wee, general manager of Citystate Cruises, told Travel Weekly Asia that he was impressed with the reinvention. Travel agency representatives from Asia Pacific also commended the ship’s redesigned public area and dining choices. 

The Palace was another highlight, which was used to host a special fashion show showcasing the designs of Grace Chen. 

Following its homeporting in Shanghai and Tianjin in China, from where it will sail curated itineraries to Japan, Hong Kong and Vietnam, World Explorer will head Down Under in October this year to sail cruises out of Sydney and Auckland. These itineraries take passengers to destinations with a strong heritage such as Port Arthur in Tasmania.

Further south, movie-loving families will recognise Wellington in New Zealand as the backdrop of ‘Lord of the Rings’ and ‘The Hobbit’ trilogy. 

“While the dominant cruise itineraries in the Australian market are at least 10 days, I believe our seven-day voyages can better fit Asian guests’ travel culture and habits,“ says Zhu, adding that the Asian DNA of the vessel would set it apart with from western cruise brands operating in the Australia and New Zealand market. 

Also, as the travel behaviours of Asian travellers evolve, the potential of the fly-cruise market is growing, leaving the industry with more opportunities. 

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