(7 a.m. BST) -- Marella Cruises revealed Thursday it will welcome a new ship to its fleet in 2023 and introduced new itinerary offerings in the United States sailing roundtrip from Port Canaveral (Orlando), Florida.
The fifth ship in the line's fleet, Marella Voyager will enter service on 3 June 2023. The 1997-built ship began life as Celebrity Cruises' Mercury, before joining the TUI fleet as Mein Schiff Herz.
Marella Voyager will also highlight passenger favourites such as Suft and Turf, Nonna's and Snack Shack. Voyager will also debut a brand-new Mexican venue and the Secret Speakeasy Bar.
When Marella Voyager debuts, the ship will sail a variety of itineraries in the Mediterranean, including port calls in Spain and Southern France.
"After a challenging year for the industry we couldn’t be more thrilled to finally announce we’ll be welcoming Marella Voyager, the fifth ship in our fleet, in Spring 2023 with her first sailing taking place in June," Chris Hackney, Managing Director of Cruise for TUI UK & I, stated. "This ship builds on our already popular fleet and offers loyal customers and new customers more choice. We know what our customers like and so we want to ensure we keep some Marella Cruises favourites but also adding a different flavour to Marella Voyager too. "
Marella Heads Stateside
Also revealed Thursday were three brand-new itineraries that visit the United States as part of the line's summer 2023 cruise programme aboard Marella Discovery.
The itineraries, which sail roundtrip Port Canaveral, near Orlando,
Passengers can also choose from 18 different hotels in Orlando or the eastern coast of Florida for those who are looking for a stay-cruise holiday.
Says Hackney, "Being able to set sail into the USA next year is another milestone for us. Expanding our programme allows our customers to experience once-in-a-lifetime adventures and we’ve made sure there really is something for everyone. The excitement for cruising is well and truly back and we’re delighted to be able to continue to offer new experiences for our customers."
An inaugural "Sunshine and Jazz" voyage will take passengers between Bridgetown, Barbados and Port Canaveral, stopping along the way in St. Thomas; Puerto Rico; Tampa; Key West; Miami; and offering three days in the iconic city of New Orleans.
Two additional itineraries -- "Sunshine State and Sands" and "Floridian Favourites" -- call on numerous ports in the Caribbean, Bahamas and the Florida coast.
Finally, passengers can sail on Marella's "American Dream" itinerary to cruise roundtrip from Port Canaveral, with a two-day visit to New York City and port calls in Charleston, South Carolina and Freeport, Bahamas.
TUI Airways will operate direct flights to Melbourne, Florida International Airport, located south of Orlando and Port Canaveral, for passengers booked on Marella Discovery's American voyages.
Bookings for these new itineraries, along with the inaugural season of sailings aboard Marella Voyager, open on 4 November 2021.