More river boats for Viking
Viking River Cruises, which has been on a building spree, has ordered 10 more Longships to be built and launched in 2013 and 2014. The 190-passenger boats will cruise European rivers, which are a fast-growing segment of the cruise industry.
The new order is for two ships next year — on top of the eight already on order for 2013 — and eight in 2014.
When these additional boats are built, Viking, which caters to North American passengers, will have introduced a total of 24 new ships in a three-year period.
Delta adds humor to safety videos
The Kiwis aren’t the only airline workers with a sense of humor.
In the last few years, Air New Zealand has produced several quirky airplane safety videos that feature nude flight attendants, fitness guru Richard Simmons and characters from the Lord of the Rings movies.
Delta Air Lines has now unveiled its own humorous safety videos, apparently the first by a major U.S. airline.
The two Delta videos include a robot passenger that turns itself off before takeoff, a warning sign prohibiting playing squash onboard and a passenger with two left feet, among other gags.
Delta said the videos are designed to get the attention of frequent fliers who have seen dozens of airline safety presentations over the years.
“The purpose of the video is very serious,” said Mauricio Parise, Delta’s general manager of marketing and communications. “But we want to make sure people are not disconnected with the message.”
Sites reopening after Sandy
The South Street Seaport Museum reopened to visitors Monday for the first time since Superstorm Sandy hit the region, and it was scheduled to launch two new exhibits this weekend.
The museum, located at 12 Fulton St. in Lower Manhattan on the East River, is one of the last tourist attractions in the city to reopen.
Also still closed to visitors are the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island, which will not reopen before 2013. And the Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum on the Hudson River is still closed as well.
Flooding from Sandy, which hit at the end of October, destroyed electrical and heating systems in many building basements in the South Street area. The Seaport’s Pier 17 has reopened and New York Water Taxi service has resumed there, but many businesses and shops remain closed.
The Seaport neighborhood’s cobblestone streets, preserved 19th century buildings and tall-masted historic vessels anchored at Pier 17 create an evocative glimpse of New York’s old waterfront and is a popular tourist destination.
The historic vessels and the Seaport museum’s collections and exhibits were not damaged, but the museum’s mechanical, heating and electrical systems were shut down. For now, visitors must use stairs to the museum as its escalators and elevators are still not operating. Heat is being blown into the building from heaters located on the street.
The museum was scheduled to open two new exhibits Friday, Street Shots/NYC and A Fisherman’s Dream: Folk Art.
Miami Herald wire services