A look at Holland America Line’s 2013 Grand Pacific & Far East Voyage


ms Amsterdam’s 75-day Grand Pacific and Far East Voyage will feature eight guest speakers, four guest chefs and plenty of local entertainment!

Departing in September 2013, ms Amsterdam will embark upon a 75-day grand tour, exploring the Grand Pacific and the Far East.

The cruise ship will tour Hawaii, Micronesia, China, Japan, the Philippines and French Polynesia, as well as making maiden calls to the exotic ports of Majuro, Marshall Islands, and Pohnpei, Micronesia.  Further, those on the 75-day cruise will enjoy overnight stops in Hong Kong, Shanghai, Japan and Singapore, giving them plenty of opportunity to enjoy the culture and atmosphere of the region.

Guests without 2.5 months to spare cruising can still enjoy a smaller holiday with the line.  21- to 43-day segments of the cruise are still available for booking.

The “On Location” program:

In order to totally immerse guests in the region’s culture and to allow holidaymakers to experience local customs, Holland America are running an “On Location” program, featuring activities including lei making, ukulele lessons, hula classes and Hawaiian language classes.  Local performers will also entertain guests during special evening performances in a variety of locations.

Guest chefs:

Food & Wine Magazine’s Culinary Arts Center onboard ms Amsterdam will host four chefs during the 75-day voyage, who will all take it in turns to whip up their signature dishes during the holiday.  Their creations will reflect the region where they’re sailing.

Guests will also enjoy cooking demonstrations, wine tastings, Q&A sessions, and hands on cooking classes with the chefs in the ship’s fancy professional show kitchen.

Here’s a look at the chefs booked to join the cruise:

  • Joseph Caputo (Sept. 20-29) – Joseph is a culinary educator, author and chef/owner at Zuppa del Giorno and Catering by Joseph in Scranton, Pa.
  • George Geary (Oct. 10-23) – George Geary is a former pastry chef at Disney Corp.  He is now a culinary journalist, author and educator.
  • Paulette Mitchell (Nov. 3-23) – Paulette is known for her ethnic cuisine.
  • Naomi Kakiuchi (Oct. 24-Nov. 2) – Naomi is a sushi expert, and Asian cuisine specialist and president of NuCulinary.

Guest Speakers:

Guests looking to learn something new can enjoy a range of lectures during their time at sea too.  There are a number of experts on hand to entertain and educate.  Joining the ship will be:

  • Dr. John Palmisano (Sept. 20-29) – Dr. Palmisano holds a Ph.D. in marine biology.  He has studied sea otter ecology in Alaska and the decline of wild Pacific salmon.
  • David Smith (Sept. 20-29) – Mr. Smith is a professional photographer and travel writer.  He has published successful travel photography tutorial CDs and DVDs.
  • Joseph Kess (Sept. 29-Oct. 14) – Mr. Kess is the retired emeritus chair in Japan and Asia-Pacific Relations of the Center for Asia-Pacific Initiatives at Canada’s University of Victoria. He is an elected fellow of the Royal Society of Canada and was inducted into the prestigious Order of the Rising Sun by the Japanese government.
  • Sandra Millikin (Sept. 29-Oct. 23) – Ms. Millikin is an architectural historian.  She was assistant curator at the Royal Institute of British Architects Drawings Collection, which is now housed in London’s Victoria and Albert Museum. She also was a lecturer at the Open University.
  • Professor Roberta Sloan (Oct. 14-Nov. 17) – Professor Sloan has produced, directed and acted in more than 200 productions. She brings a wealth of experience with her, having taught at Marymount College, Huntingdon College, University of Oklahoma and the University of Central Oklahoma.  Finally Professor Sloan has received a Kennedy Center Medal.
  • Stephen Sloan (Oct. 14-Nov. 17) – A professor emeritus at the University of Oklahoma, and a pioneer in research and teaching on terrorism.  His book “Simulating Terrorism” has been used to conduct exercises internationally. Sloan is the author of 13 books and consults for the U.S. government and internationally.
  • Melvyn Foster (Oct. 23-Nov. 17) – A  destination, wildlife and maritime speaker with an interest in maritime history and commerce, particularly the Atlantic and Pacific liners.  He has personally logged more than 75 Atlantic and Pacific crossings.
  • Elizabeth Foggin (Nov. 17-Dec. 4) – Ms. Foggin holds a Ph.D. in Applied Social Sciences from Universite de Montreal.  Elizabeth Foggin explored the experience of leisure and tourism of people with reduced physical abilities for her thesis. She is co-author of a study and report commissioned by United Nations’ Asia Pacific office concerning “Barrier-Free Tourism in the Asia Pacific Region.”

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