Passionate pursuit

Alan Whitt has written about cruising for 16 years and has sailed on countless cruise ships. His expertise and passion drove him to create Allure Quest Travel Experience so that he could spread the joy of his favorite pastime.

 
Let’s be honest. The 2014 Country Music Cruise may give some folks a serious case of sticker shock.
 
After all, cheapest room on Holland America’s Eurodam is a $4,500 inside cabin for two that’s about 155 square feet.
 
At the opposite end is the penthouse suite ... a 1,150 square foot home-away-from-home that goes for an eye-popping $15,650 for those same two country music fans.

However, you get what you pay for. And the Country Music Cruise is a bargain. Where else can you get around-the-clock gourmet food, impeccable service ... and a Hall of Fame lineup of country music talent.

Vince Gill ... Kenny Rogers ... Ronnie Milsap ... Patty Loveless ... and many more. Worth every dime.

Holland America is what is described as a premium cruise line. This isn’t Carnival. The level of comfort and cuisine is unmatched at this level. So are the performers.

 
 
Whenever Entertainment Cruise Productions puts on one of their full-ship charter music cruises you can always expect a few surprises.
The Country Music Cruise in 2014 is no different.
There are two surprises so far ... one that we’ll open right now, while the other will just have to wait until you get onboard.
The ship has been changed from the ms Westerdam to the ms Eurodam. That’s a good thing. although Westerdam is an elegant ship, it was built in 2004 while Eurodam is four years younger.
I fact, Entertainment Cruise Productions is moving all of its cruises to Eurodam instead of Westerdam.
The second surprise is that if you book this cruise, at some day during your seven-night voyage a mystery country music star will appear.
And since there are a total of ninety No. 1 hits among the 12 performers and groups already booked, you can bet that whoever it is will be an eye opener.
The list of performers has grown to 12 so far with the additions of Larry Gatlin and Wade Hayes. Previously announced are Vince Gill, Kenny Rogers, Patty Loveless, Jo Dee Messina, Ronnie Millsap, Restless Heart, Andy Griggs, Ty Herndon, Jamie O’Neal and Loraine Crook. 
There are more performers in negotiations right now, so expect a a truly dynamic casts of performers when Eurodam sets sail from Ft. Lauderdale on January 19, 2014.

 
 
Don’t let a disability deter you from sailing on The Country Music Cruise in 2014.
Today’s modern cruise ships are designed to accommodate all guests - including those with disabilities - and Holland America’s Westerdam is no exception.
Depending on your specific disability, Holland America makes every effort to assure that your cruise will be enjoyable and safe.
Some staterooms are specially designed for wheelchair accessibility with wider entry doors, roll-in showers, hand-held shower nozzles as well as lower closers and towel rods.
Across the ship, signs make it known which restrooms are accessible, which routes are best suited for wheelchairs and basically how to get around.
Obviously, there are limitations and guests should take that into consideration before booking this or any cruise.
Can you bring your own wheelchair or scooter onboard? Yes, as long as they fit specific guidelines such as weight, size and battery type. And scooters need to be securey stored in your stateroom and not left in the hallway.
Would getting off the ship with a wheelchair or scooter be a problem? It can be. Of the three ports, St. Barths and Half Moon Cay rely on tenders to get you ashore. Depending on your mobility equipment, rough seas may make it tough on you.
There are guidelines for others with disabilities such as deafness or blindness. Simply email me at alan@allurequest.com with your questions.



 
 
Hello country music fans ... and welcome to Allure Quest Travel Experience!
Since I moved to Nashville seven years ago, I've been waiting for someone to put together the definitive country music cruise. Yes, individuals have performed on cruise ships through the years - including Taylor Swift with a single show onboard Royal Caribbean's magnificent Allure of the Seas.
But it took Entertainment Cruise Productions to create the 2014 Country Music Cruise with the fantastic lineup that makes this voyage one of country music's signature events of the year.
So far, 10 performers and groups have signed on the dotted line to perform on premium cruise line Holland America's ms Westerdam, January 19-26, 2014. You can expect more entertainment and events as we draw closer to the sailing date.
Those committed thus far are Vince Gill, Ronnie Milsap, Patty Loveless, Kenny Rogers, Jo Dee Messina, Restless Heart, Andy Griggs, Ty Herndon, Jamie O’Neal and Lorianne Crook.
If you don't know much about Entertainment Cruise Productions, they've been creating music cruises for 12 years - always to full ships. They are indeed the worldwide leader in full-ship charter cruises ... including The Jazz Cruise, The Smooth Jazz Cruise, The Soul Train Cruise, The Malt Shop Memories Cruise and new to the mix ... Celtic Thunder Cruise and Ship of Fear Cruise.
However, I gotta believe that country music is going to be one of their most popular. Country music is America's music, and is loved by young and old alike. Although the artists are as human as the rest of us and make just as many mistakes and bad life choices, country music is relatively wholesome and real.
So I sell this cruise with pride and anticipation, knowing that as we sail the Caribbean Sea, the sounds of all these wonderful performer may also have the fish following the ship to our next destination.