Let’s Imagine…how would it be, your meeting at sea?

Timing is everything… and it’s a new year!

Isn’t it time for a cool new venue?
Let’s imagine… how would it be, your meeting at sea?
Click on the SlideShare below to begin your voyage!

Want to learn more?

For a complimentary consultation, give us a call at 800.448.9002.

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Massive Classic Rock Theme Cruise, with 50 Concerts Over 4 Days!

Rock Legends Cruise III logoOnce again, The Native American Heritage Association (NAHA) and the theme cruise specialists at Landry & Kling are collaborating to produce a gigantic classic rock cruise – and Rock Legends Cruise III is shaping up to be the biggest one yet!

50 Concerts During a 4-Day Rock Legends Cruise

Rock Legends Cruise III, benefitting NAHA, will take place on Royal Caribbean’s Liberty of the Seas, sailing out of Ft. Lauderdale to the Bahamas February 19, 2015.

Imagine….thousands of diehard classic rock fans will be onboard their own chartered cruise ship, and have the chance to hear and meet their favorite artists in a self-contained resort venue!

Here’s the initial lineup*

  • The Doobie Brothers
  • Alice Cooper
  • 38 Special
  • The Marshall Tucker Band
  • Eddie Money
  • Dickey Betts & Great Southern
  • Blue Oyster Cult
  • Uriah Heep
  • The Outlaws
  • The Edgar Winter Band
  • Ten Years After
  • Kim Simmonds & Savoy Brown
  • Pat Travers Band
  • The Artimus Pyle Band
  • The Blue Lords

* Stay tuned…more exciting announcements to come!

In between the concerts, Meet & Greets, Q&A forums, and everything else, “Rock Legends” passengers can enjoy all the ship’s on board activities, including surfing on the FlowRider surf simulator, basketball, boxing, mini-golf, rock-climbing, whirlpools and a variety of gourmet restaurants and casual dining venues.

Don’t Miss Out!

Cabins are moving quickly, with a significant number already sold to those who have sailed the Rock Legends “journey” before. Classic rocks fans will want to book their cabins soon before the cruise sells out. Pricing begins at $1099 per person (double occupancy).

For further information including details of the cruise, ticket/cabin purchase, what’s included and answers to FAQ’s, please visit the Rock Legends Cruise III website or  call 888-666-1499. Travel Agent calls welcome!

Read the full press release.

 

 

 

 

 

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Team Report: Want to surprise and delight your group? Here’s a taste…

Landry & Kling staff gathers for holiday lunchAnticipation rose, and excitement was palpable as the Landry & Kling staff gathered in the office reception area for instructions. We were split into teams, and then it was time for our annual holiday scavenger hunt leading us to our luncheon celebration. We had no idea where in the world we would end up!

After our various teams raced to solve puzzles and find clues, we finally reached our secret destination: Port Everglades in Fort Lauderdale, where our Princess Cruises’ sales rep, Elena Rodriguez, was waiting to whisk us through security and on board the beautiful Ruby Princess.

Surprise and delight…

Ruby Princess Attrium

Ruby Princess Piazza

Our first impression was….WOW! The dazzling atrium reminded us of an Italian piazza, with live music and a bustling cafe. But this was only the beginning! After a private tour of the 3,082-passenger ship, we were led to the elegant Sabatini’s Restaurant, high atop the Ruby Princess, where more surprises and delight awaited us:

L&K staff-Sabatinis Restaurant on Ruby Princess

Our private dining area in Sabatini’s Restaurant

  • A beautifully set table in a private section of Sabatini’s Restaurant (what a way to make us feel special!)
  • Menus customized just for us!
  • Amazing 4-course lunch, with antipasti served family style, freshly prepared pasta, choice of lobster served 3 ways or grilled veal chop entrée, and the piece de resistance – white chocolate mousse with limoncello cream and honey tulle for dessert. (My mouth is watering just thinking of it!)
  • Ramon Santos birthday cake Ruby PrincessPersonal attention from the maitre d’ and staff
  • Special surprise: Birthday cake and hat for Ramon Santos, our VP Global Events (pictured right)

A few culinary secrets:

Over lunch, Elena shared some “back of the house” reasons why meals are such a treat onboard Ruby Princess (and all Princess ships):

  • The coffee is ground fresh every day
  • Pasta and bread dough are made from scratch daily
  • All sauces prepared fresh daily

Save your nickels and dimes…you won’t need them on Ruby Princess!

Besides meals, entertainment and daily activities, a few other surprise inclusions:

  • http://blog.landrykling.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/01/DSC_1538.jpgInternational cafe in the Atrium serves complimentary snacks and light fare 24 hours a day
  • Complimentary soft-serve Ice cream served on deck throughout the day
  • Hand-tossed pizza, hot dogs and hamburgers on pool deck – never a charge
  • “Movies Under the Stars” Poolside theater – warm blankets, popcorn, milk & cookies delivered to you – never a charge!

Other Ways Ruby Princess Will Delight Your Group or Meeting Attendees

Dining Options Include: Two complimentary dining rooms to give your group the choice of traditional, fixed seating or flexible, open seating.

DSC_1540

Specialty restaurants include Sabatinis, with emphasis on fresh pasta and seafood specialities (The cover charge for dinner is $25 – trust me – it’s worth every penny!); and Crown Grill, for cooked-to-order steaks and fresh seafood in an elegant and intimate setting (cover charge $25).

Ultimate Balcony Dining: This is Princess’ ultimate private dining experience! Breathtaking views and a special meal are served by dedicated wait staff on guests’ stateroom balconies. Ultimate Balcony Dining features a hosted cocktail party, fresh flowers, champagne and a deluxe four-course meal.

The Piazza: Ruby Princess’ piazza-style grand atrium is the ship’s stunning centerpiece. Spanning several decks, it features the International Café, Vines Bar, and several glass-walled elevators. Live music and “street” entertainers make this a lively spot for your group to connect with one another.

Adiago Bar Ruby PrincessCozy Lounges: Ruby Princess has all the big ship amenities, but intimate lounges and public spaces give it a small ship feel.

Sanctuary: For your attendees seeking a quiet retreat this plush, outdoor spa-inspired setting is the perfect respite for relaxation! “Serenity Stewards” will attend to their every need - from a chilled face towel and Evian water atomizers, to a menu of healthy beverages and fare. The Serenity Stewards even have personal MP3 players with noise canceling headphones available, loaded with relaxing playlists.

For your meetings and group events:

Princess Theater Ruby Princess

Princess Theater on Ruby Princess

DSC_1488The Ruby Princess Theater accommodates 850, with fold out table tops. There is also a dedicated conference center and a variety of inviting lounges and venues that can be used for meetings and breakouts. Several intimate, cozy lounges are perfect for casual get-togethers.

Ruby Princess “Getaway” Itineraries:

Four and five-night Eastern or Western Caribbean cruises are now sailing from Ft. Lauderdale – perfect for your shorter incentive programs or group events.

The only not-so-great part of our Ruby Princess experience?

We had to leave the ship after lunch!

Ruby Princess

To learn more about Ruby Princess or request a group quote, give us a call at 800.448.9002

 

 

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L&K Team Report: Mediterranean Style Cruising on MSC Divina

The Landry & Kling team just returned from a 3-day familiarization cruise to the Bahamas aboard MSC Divina, where we had a chance to sample Mediterranean Style Cruising, close to home. (All photos by Maureen McKeon.)

MSC Divina in Bahamas

MSC Divina anchored at Little San Salvador Island, Bahamas

Not familiar with MSC Cruises? Trust us, you will be soon! This privately-owned family company is already a leader in the Mediterranean cruise market, with 11 state-of-the-art ships sailing in Europe. With the introduction of MSC Dvina cruising to the Caribbean year-round from Miami, MSC Cruises is poised to be a big player in the North American market.

This Italian cruise line’s roots are evident throughout the ship – from the sleek, contemporary design elements to the dinner menus featuring regional specialties. Their Italian heritage is also highlighted by MSC’s unique product partnerships, including Zegafredo Zanetti coffee, Nutella, Venchi Gelato, and Eataly.

Eataly Restaurant on MSC Divina

Eataly Italian Restaurant

Here are some of our staff’s impressions and favorite experiences:

From Joyce Landry, CEO: I loved the framed diva photographs and biographies throughout the ship – Claudia Cardinale, Gina Lollobrigida, Audrey Hepburn…It was wonderful to have authentic Italian food – rich olive oil, creamy risotto, fresh made pasta, great selection of Italian wines. I liked the concept of cruising Mediterranean style in the Caribbean – it added an international flair and distinguishes MSC from other ships in the market.

Our waiters celebrate Italian style in the dining room

Our waiters celebrate Italian style in the dining room.

Cyndi Murphy, VP Corporate Planning: Boarding the ship, you enter an impressive Atrium featuring two dramatic Swarovski crystal staircases and a classical quartet… what a way to begin a cruise! I also loved the Mediterranean style and stunning decor of the bars and lounges. With 1600 seats, the Pantheon Theater is a spectacular setting for an awards presentation!

Swarovski crystal staircases

Swarovski crystal staircases

Gretta Roque, Administrative Specialist: I heard great reviews of all the shows, but my favorite entertainment was the Dueling Pianos in the Golden Jazz Lounge. The two musicians were very engaging and funny – they had the crowd singing and clapping along during every show.

MSC Divina GoldenJazzLounge

Golden Jazz Lounge

Maureen McKeon, Web Content Editor: The production shows in the beautiful Pantheon Theater were superb – they earned well-deserved standing ovations every night. I also loved the delicious Italian coffee and food products available throughout the ship (I am now obsessed with Venchi chocolates!)

Pantheon Theater

Pantheon Theater

More about MSC Divina

MSC Divina features 1,751 staterooms, a casino, seven restaurants, 18 bars and lounges, five swimming pools, a bowling alley, theater, gym, spa, internet café, conference center, kids and teen areas.

This is also the first time the line’s signature “ship within a ship” has been offered in North America. The exclusive MSC Yacht Club features 69 suites with butler service, 24-hour concierge service, private lounge, restaurant and pool. A buy-out of the Yacht Club is a terrific option for corporate groups!

Top Sail Lounge in the Yacht Club

Top Sail Lounge in the Yacht Club

MSC Divina is offering alternating 7-night Eastern and Western Caribbean cruises from Miami at remarkably value-packed rates. This is a wonderful, cost-effective venue for multi-generational and family groups – kids 11 years and younger always sail free!

For group rates and more information about MSC Divina, give us a call at 800-448-9002.

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Planner Talk: Will my group feel confined on a ship?

If you’ve never planned an event at sea, you might be wondering…”Will my group feel confined on a cruise ship?” Listen in as meeting planners debunk this stubborn misconception while discussing how their attendees felt during their cruise program.

Check out all 20 of Landry & Kling’s planner-narrated “How to” cruise event videos.

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Guess who loves their job?

announcing a cruise eventYes, Meeting & Event Planner….that would be you! ConventionsSouth Magazine just released their Trend Watch 2014 with some interesting revelations, like:

  • 75% of planners love their jobs (wow – that’s way above the national average of  30% reported in Gallup’s 2013 State of the American Workplace Report!)
  • 42% of planners are optimistic about the future of the meeting industry in the next 18 months (only 19% think it will get worse).
  • 54% say more event attendance is growing (great news for conference planners!)

Here’s a rundown of some other Trend Watch findings, along with even more reasons for meeting pros like you to be happy!

Hotel & Supplier Negotiations

When it comes to negotiating, here’s what the surveyed planning pros said hotels and suppliers are willing to discuss:

  • 62% Internet Access
  • 54% Meeting space rental fees*
  • 46% guest room rates
  • 32% Attrition 30% resort fees**
  • 29% F&B*
  • 29% meeting services*

* included during a cruise event
**resort fees not applicable

Cruise Takeway: According to a recent report in Incentive Magazine, more than 50 percent of meeting professionals surveyed said “price negotiations” was the biggest cause of  job stress during event planning stages, and “hidden costs and fees” caused the most stress after events.

Meeting planners can substantially reduce stress by booking a cruise – with so many inclusion, there is less negotiation during planning, and no hidden fee surprises. Cross off 4 of the items listed above when you book a cruise!

What you’re investing more money on

  • 39% F&B*
  • 39% A/V*
  • 31% Programming
  • 19% Off-site events/parties
  • 17% Housing
  • 11% Meeting rooms*
  • 9% Incentives/rewards
  • 6% Transportation**

* included on a cruise
**transportation between ports included

Cruise Takeaway: With the money you save on F&B, AV, meeting space, off-site events and entertainment during a cruise, you can add more program amenities or reduce your overall event expenses - adding to the ROI.

How meeting & event planners are saving

  • 15% selecting more regional locations
  • 50% seeking second or third-tier destinations
  • 68% willing to be flexible on dates to get best rate

Cruise Takeaway: More ships are sailing from over a dozen close-to-home ports, and most cruise lines offer excellent rates for off-peak or “soft” sailing dates.

Planners want to work with those who will work with them

84% said finding meeting site rep with willingness to negotiate contracts is extremely important when selecting an event location.

Cruise Takeaway: Work with a trusted cruise broker/service provider to make sure you get the right ship and best “bang for your buck” from the cruise line. Landry & Kling will leverage their 30+ years of negotiating experience and cruise line relationships to negotiate the best group or charter contract terms and amenities for your event.

More from the Survey:

Free Internet
72% of planners surveyed said choosing a site with free Wi-Fi is extremely important.

Cruise Takeaway: Your cost savings on AV alone will more than make up for the cost of Internet packages on cruise ships.

Big Trend for 2014
Light & Healthy Food Choices. 
Attendees expect more choice, dietary options including gluten-free, vegan etc.

Cruise Takeaway: Cruise ships offer plenty of food choices for all, in a variety of delightful (complimentary) venues – and no charge for special dietary requests.

Read ConventionSouth’s digital magazine for more about the Trend Watch 2014 report.

Want to learn more about events at sea?

Give the cruise specialists at Landry & Kling a call at 800.448.9002 or 305.661.1990 for your free group cruise consultation.

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L&K Team Report: New Wows on Vision of the Seas

Sailing from Miami on Vision of the SeasAfter spending a month in dry dock, Royal Caribbean’s Vision of the Seas made her triumphant return to South Florida, and the L&K team was on board Sunday to experience the first sailing of the newly revitalized ship. What a glorious day for a one-night “cruise to nowhere” from Miami!

During our 18 hours on board, we checked out the new decor and updated venues, sampled cuisine from new specialty restaurants, joined in the festivities on deck and were genuinely “wowed” by the dazzling aerial performance and spectacular light show in the Centrum.

Here are some observations from the L&K team:

From Joyce Landry: The variety and quality of the food exceeded my expectations – the sushi samplings in Izumi and shrimp ravioli at dinner were delicious!

Dinner menu at  L&K staff table, Vision of the Seas

Dinner menu and streamers at our staff table

From Jo Kling: Love the new digital signage – I have no sense of direction, so I’m continually checking to make sure I’m headed where I think I’m going! And I love to see what’s going on in real time around the ship. 

Digital Wayfinder signage on Vision of the Seas

Digital Wayfinder signage

From Maureen McKeon: The Masquerade Theater is a beautiful venue for meetings and award presentations.

Masquerade theater, Vision of the Seas

Masquerade Theater

Vicki Fernandez added: The secondary lounge, with ocean views and comfy seating clusters, is the perfect venue for creative brainstorming sessions or breakouts. The number of specialty restaurants provides many opportunities to reward top producers of any incentive.

Secondary Lounge on Vision of the Seas

Some Enchanted Evening Secondary Lounge

From Cyndi Murphy: The stunning Centrum makes a dramatic first impression when you board the ship.

The Centrum and R Bar, Vision of the Seas

The Centrum and R Bar

Dorothea Stratoudakis continues: And the evening aerial performance and light show was a definite Wow experience!

Aerial performance in the atrium, Vision of the Seas

Aerialists perform in the Centrum

Gretta Roque noted:  There were plenty of intimate venues and cozy nooks throughout the ship to meet up with friends or enjoy quiet moments.

R Bar in the Centrum, Vision of the Seas

R Bar in the Centrum

Nicola Rowan said: The giant movie screen on the pool deck is cool, but I also love the adults-only Solarium Pool – it’s a lovely area to relax. The evening pool party on deck was a fun event, the flashing glasses and rings distributed to guests added to the Party Atmosphere!

Pool Deck with giant movie screen, Vision of the Seas

Pool Deck with giant movie screen

Of course, we didn’t have time to experience all the cool new venues and features on the revitalized Vision of the Seas, so here’s a list.

The new features on the Vision of the Seas Include:

Entertainment & Lounges

  • New Centrum experiences, including jaw-dropping aerial spectacles
  • R Bar, located in the Centrum
  • Jumbo outdoor movie screen
  • Concierge Club and Diamond Lounge (for Pinnacle Crown & Anchor Society members, Diamond members, and select suite guests)
sailaway on deck, Vision of the Seas

Sailaway celebration on deck

Dining

  • Chef’s Table, an intimate dining experience
  • Chops Grille, Royal Caribbean’s signature steakhouse
  • Izumi, Asian fusion
  • Giovanni’s Table Italian restaurant
  • Park Cafe (complimentary)
Giovanni's Table, Italian trattoria on Vision of the Seas

Giovanni’s Table, Italian trattoria

For Families

  • Royal Babies & Tots Nursery

Technology

  • Digital Wayfinder signage
  • Pervasive WiFi
  • Flat-screen TV’s
Wayfinder digital signage, Vision of the Seas

Wayfinder digital signage

General Consensus

We all agreed that Vision of the Seas is a great, value-packed ship for meetings, incentive travel programs and special interest cruises. Her smaller size (999 staterooms/1998 guests), makes Vision especially appealing for smaller groups who want a more intimate experience without sacrificing  the variety of entertainment and dining options found on the bigger Royal Caribbean ships.

Vision of the Seas Main Dining Room

Vision of the Seas Main Dining Room

The main show lounge accommodates 870, the secondary lounge has seating for 570, and there are three small conference rooms, as well as several other venues that your organization can use for meetings and group events. And of course, meeting space and A/V is always included!

Vision of the Seas Itineraries

After a series of Panama Canal cruises, Vision of the Seas will return to Ft. Lauderdale on April 29, 2014 to begin 4 & 5-night Western Caribbean cruises. In November 2014, the ship will move to Tampa and offer 7 night cruises to Western Caribbean ports.

Every Ship is the Best Ship

The 1998-passenger Vision of the Seas joins 12 other ships in the fleet that have already received extensive upgrades and Oasis-class enhancements. Four additional Royal Caribbean ships will receive makeovers in 2014-2015, making “every ship their best ship”.

Want to take your group on Vision of the Seas or any of the other Royal Caribbean “Wow” ships? Give us a call at 800.448.9002 or 305.661.1880, and we’ll find the best fit for your program!

 

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“A World at Sea” to sail through Manhattan

Royal Caribbean International and Macy’s revealed the first look at the cruise line’s new float, which will set sail down the streets of New York as part of the 87th Annual Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade .

The float, dubbed “A World at Sea,” will bring Royal Caribbean’s cruise experience to midtown Manhattan and beyond via three postcard scenes from a Royal Caribbean ship. The rotating scenes depict three “WOW” moments found only onboard Royal Caribbean, including the  signature FlowRider surf simulator, thrilling zip line and iconic rock climbing wall.

Royal Caribbean "World At Sea" float for Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade.

First look at Royal Caribbean’s “World At Sea” float

The float will celebrate the November 2014 debut of Quantum of the Seas – the first ship in Royal Caribbean’s groundbreaking Quantum-class. Spanning 18 decks with  2,090 staterooms, the Quantum class ships boast a groundbreaking lineup of “firsts at sea” and extraordinary spaces to give your group more Wow experiences, including:

  • RipCord by iFly –  The First Skydiving Experience At Sea. This thrilling adventure will transport your attendees more than 300 feet in the air on a breathtaking virtual journey.
  • The North Star – Journey Above the Sea -This engineering marvel that will also take your attendees to new heights – literally! A jewel-shaped glass capsule will transport them on a spectacular journey more than 300 feet above the ocean and over the sides of the ship to deliver 360-degree views.
  • Two70° – A Revolutionary Concept  - During the day, this multi-level venue provides a peaceful setting with soaring glass walls spanning nearly three decks. As the sun sets, Two70° seamlessly fuses entertainment and technology to create a transformative journey from day to night.
  • Music Hall – A Performance Hall and Live Music Venue- The hottest spot on the ship for your group to enjoy intimate and exclusive access to live performances, DJs, theme night parties, billiards and more.
  • SeaPlex – The Largest Indoor Active Space At Sea – This distinctive and flexible sporting and entertainment venue features a circus school with the first flying trapeze at sea.
  • Virtual Balconies – Every Room has a Sea View – Virtual balconies in interior staterooms offer expansive real-time views of the ocean and exciting destinations.

Quantum of the Seas will offer 7-12 night Bahamas & Caribbean cruises, sailing from her home port of Cape Liberty, NJ during the winter 2014/15 season.

 

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Planner Talk: What does the C-Suite say about cruise events?

Wondering how your C-Suite will respond to a meeting or group event at sea? If your top execs haven’t cruised lately, they might not be aware of the tremendous cost savings and other benefits. When they realize the motivational value, hear the positive feedback from attendees and see the ROI, they can’t help but be pleased. Listen to what these meeting planners have to say:

Check out all 20 of Landry & Kling’s planner-narrated “How to” cruise event videos.

Categories: Landry & Kling News, Meeting & Incentive News, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

An inspiring 2-minute journey into America’s heartland

There’s no more unique way for your group to experience the history, heritage and culture of America’s heartland than a Mississippi River voyage aboard a genuine steamboat like the newly refurbished American Queen. Enjoy this inspiring introductory video that brings the American Queen, and the slice of American history she represents, to life.

To learn more about American Queen and new “American Heartland” itineraries for 2014, speak to one of the cruise advisors at Landry & Kling: 800.448.9002 or 305.661.1880.

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