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The battle for the 2023 wave season heats up between Virgin Voyages, Celebrity, Princess and Royal Caribbean

This week, Virgin Voyages revealed the its new Resilient Lady would be heading Down Under. And her arrival marks a new era of cruising with bigger and better ships slated for Australia and New Zealand.

Celebrity Cruises are set to turn 2023 into one of the most exciting cruise years on the calendar. The cruise line will be sending the Celebrity Edge with her cantilevered Magic Carpet, while Princess has the MedallionClass Royal Princess return for the 2023/24 wave season. We will also see Royal Caribbean’s  Quantum of the Seas sailing from Brisbane.

Resilient Lady will arrive at Station Pier in Port Melbourne at the end of 2023 after a 44-night trans-continental voyage from Athens to Sydney.

“Australia has a very special place in my heart, and we can’t wait for Australians & New Zealanders to meet our Resilient Lady and experience all that she has to offer in true Virgin style,” says Virgin Group Founder Sir Richard Branson.

From Melbourne the Resilient Lady will cruise the east coast of Australia and Tasmania on a series of itineraries from two to 14 nights and will make its way to New Zealand ports like Picton, Napier, Tauranga, Auckland, Christchurch and Dunedin.

Cruises departing on the Scarlet Lady from Terminal V at the Port of Miami enjoy a luxury experience before they even board.

“Normally cruise terminals are dull, lifeless places where people are herded onto even more boring boats,” Branson says, however he assures travellers that Terminal V “will be filled with colour and fun, a place where people can really begin their voyage of a lifetime.”

Valiant Lady and Resilient Lady will be making their debuts in the Mediterranean in March and July 2022.

So what can passengers expect from a “child-free” Virgin voyage?

Four cabin options each come furnished in their own unique styles: Insider, Sea View, Sea Terrace and Rockstar Quarters.

Forget set meal times and crowded buffets – the Scarlet Lady offers a la carte dining and an app that can order champagne from anywhere onboard with the shake of your phone.

Unlimited fitness classes, cabanas, outdoor strength training facilities, and a red running track on the upper level all cater to those who prize their fitness.

For passengers seeking to raise their heart rates in a different way, Virgin Voyages offer the world’s first tattoo parlour at sea, a multi-form theatre named The Red Room, sports bars and a multitude of dining options offering up taste sensations.

The nature of having all passengers over the age of 21 allowed the design team the freedom to run wild with the kind of holidays that offer adults the flexibility and choice, relaxation and excitement that can truly create the experience of a lifetime.

Nirmal Saverimuttu, President and CEO of Virgin Voyages said:  “It’s great news, big news for Melbourne, big news for Australia. Richard Branson loves Australia.

“The Virgin brand has always felt at home there with a hot new happening product happening in the cruising industry. We’ve won most five star reviews: best new ship and is excited to bring that down, particularly to Melbourne. Melbourne is an iconic city, an iconic destination and Station Pier is a wonderful port.

“You’ll be able to see this beautiful gorgeous ship from St Kilda Beach and from there we’ll be able to offer all those exciting activities we’ve talked about. 

“Vrigin Voyages is an adult only premium sailing experience with unmistakable Virgin style service throughout. We’ve got one of a kind experiences, sunrise and sunset yoga and an outside yoga deck. Mood lighting in all the cabins, hammocks on the balconies, juice bars, coffee bars, 20 different places to eat, yacht inspired touches everywhere and my personal favourite ‘Shake for champagne’ where if you shake your phone on board a Virgin voyage we’ll have champagne delivered to you within minutes and hopefully that’s enough to get you guys to come on board. 

“Summer of 23 is a long time to wait so whoever wants to get onboard a Virgin voyage a bit sooner than that we’re sailing in the UK and sailing out of Athens and Barcelona shortly.”

He continued: “Resilient Lady will sail out of Melbourne. She’ll be sailing into Hobart, doing lots of overnights there she’ll be also sailing into New Zealand. Great ports there and Napier and Picton and all of the Milford Sound area and all those wonderful Fjord areas.

“As I said before that we have a wonderful itinerary that comes from Athens to Australia. We’re about 60% booked to go to wonderful places like Singapore and Colombo and Sri Lanka, Athens, and Dubai and we sail the Zeus Canal so lots of wonderful itineraries on offer for everyone. “