Cruise News Shorts: Carnival Wins in Charleston, Prices Go Up on Breakaway (again!) and More Cruise News

June 14, 2013
(2:43 p.m. EDT) -- Every week we catch wind of so much cruise news, we don't always know what to do with it all, but a few standout bits sometimes catch our attention. Here are some interesting cruise tidbits we think you might like to know about.

Noise, Schmoise
The South Carolina Supreme Court has dismissed several claims brought against Carnival Cruise Line by Charleston residents, environmentalists and preservationists. According to the Associated Press, justices found Carnival is not in violation of noise, pollution and sign ordinances. But the justices have asked attorneys to present additional information about whether city zoning laws apply to ocean-going vessels, and if so, are those laws pre-empted by state and federal law. The suit, filed two years ago by the Preservation Society of Charleston, the South Carolina Coastal Conservation League and several neighborhood groups, claims cruise operations and a proposed $35 million cruise terminal are illegal.

Cha Ching
Just weeks after Norwegian Cruise Line raised the price of its Norwegian Breakaway-only specialty restaurant Ocean Blue to $49 from $35, the line is now upping the cost of Breakaway's thermal suite to $199, from $149. The fee includes access to steam rooms, a dry sauna, Vitality pool, hot tubs, heated tile lounges and two salt rooms.

Happy Days
It's been awhile since we last updated which Carnival ships have the Cheers beverage program. The total stands at 14 ships: Breeze, Conquest, Dream, Freedom, Glory, Legend, Liberty, Magic, Miracle, Pride, Splendor, Sunshine, Valor and Victory.

A First Transatlantic
Quantum of the Seas' first sailing will be an eight-night transatlantic crossing from Southampton to Cape Liberty, New Jersey, departing November 2, 2014. Booking is open.

$17 Million for a Facelift!
Crystal Cruises will invest $17 million in another redesign of Crystal Serenity, scheduled to begin November 2013. During the two-week dry dock in Cadiz, Spain, the ship's penthouses and Lido Deck will be overhauled. The current penthouses will be gutted and spaces reconfigured in such a way that it can serve as a two-bedroom space. Changes planned for the indoor/outdoor Lido Deck are a redesign of the Trident Grill and Lido Café as well as removal of Tastes kitchen. Next to the Trident Grill will be a new lounge with sofa seating and a cocktail bar. The deck also will get four "living walls." During the dry dock, the ship will receive a deep cleaning, new exterior paint and energy-efficient lighting in public areas and crew offices.

--by Dori Saltzman, News Editor