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Carnival Corporation’s brands expand chef partnerships, world-class culinary options

Rudi’s Sel de Mer restaurant, ms Nieuw Statendam.

Partnerships feature Michelin-starred chefs and other celebrated stars to create new menus and restaurants, with latest additions including Guy Fieri, Curtis Stone, Thomas Keller and Rudi Sodamin.

MIAMI – Carnival Corporation & plc continues to expand its world-class culinary experiences as its nine world-leading global cruise line brands extend partnerships with more than 20 celebrity chefs and internationally-recognized culinary experts – more than any other company in the cruise industry. 

The corporation’s brands have recently announced several additions to its food and beverage partnerships and programs, with the expanded offerings building on the corporation’s extensive lineup of dining options that bring some of the world’s best culinary experiences to guests sailing on its nine cruise line brands.

“Unique dining experiences and exclusive partnerships across our brands help us continue our goal of consistently exceeding the expectations of our guests, as great dining experiences are a key part of what makes a cruise vacation so memorable,” said Roger Frizzell, chief communications officer for Carnival Corporation. “Our partnerships with some of the world’s most highly regarded and creative chefs and specialty restaurants ensure that we are delivering exceptional dining experiences, whether our guests are in the mood to relax with a favorite comfort food or want to try something new and exotic.”

Expanded Partnerships with Acclaimed Chefs, Well-Known Brands for Creative Cuisine
According to Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA), a record 30 million people are projected to cruise in 2019, up nearly 60 percent from the 17.8 million who cruised in 2009 – with nearly half of all cruise passengers sailing on one of Carnival Corporation’s brands. As dining is an important and memorable part of the overall guest experience, Carnival Corporation’s brands offer a host of inspired restaurants and cuisine from around the world, and continue to innovate their offerings to deliver extraordinary dining experiences at sea to guests.

The latest example is the grand opening of Rudi’s Sel de Mer restaurant on Holland America Line’s newest ship, ms Nieuw Statendam, recently launched in December 2018. The cruise industry’s first French-inspired, seafood brasserie specialty restaurant serves a classic selection of French seafood dishes with a contemporary twist, created by Chef Rudi Sodamin – one of the hospitality industry’s most innovative chefs and chairman of Holland America’s Culinary Council, a game-changing collaboration of seven world-class chefs guiding the culinary offerings on board and sharing their specialty menu items in all dining venues.

Carnival Cruise Line recently introduced new dining concepts onboard Carnival Horizon, its newest ship launched in 2018, including Guy's Pig & Anchor Bar-B-Que Smokehouse | Brewhouse with BBQ favorites created by Food Network star Guy Fieri and featuring four new craft beers brewed on board. The ship also features Bonsai Teppanyaki, the line's first teppanyaki venue. And when the brand’s totally transformed Carnival Radiance debuts in 2020, it will be the first cruise ship to feature “Big Chicken,” a seagoing version of a new restaurant created by the line’s Chief Fun Officer, NBA Hall of Famer Shaquille O’Neal. The menu will feature a variety of fried chicken sandwiches and fries, with flavors to match Shaq’s larger than life personality, all free of charge. 

Princess Cruises, the world’s largest international premium cruise line, is setting a new standard for the best wine list in the cruise industry with a newly imagined wine menu, offering nearly 50 percent more selections than previously available for a total of 142 wines – the most extensive in the cruise line’s history, carefully selected in partnership with Master of Wine and Master Sommelier Doug Frost. The brand also recently revamped its six-course, fine-dining experience from award-winning Chef Curtis Stone at SHARE, with fresh menu offerings and new “Crafted by Curtis” dishes on the main dining room menu rolling out fleetwide.

Princess Cruises also enhanced its beverage menus with signature cocktails created in partnership with master mixologist Rob Floyd. The new offerings include destination-specific ingredients carefully selected to delight guests with flavors from around the world. The globally inspired beverages include tantalizing offerings such as the Mayan Heat, Amaretto Manhattan and the Italian Sunset. Floyd also created a series of zero-proof cocktails without alcohol as part of the new selections. The curated menus are available aboard all Princess Cruises ships as of fall 2018.

Another recent addition is Cunard’s new dining concept, “Steakhouse at The Verandah,” which has become a permanent feature after a successful pop-up. The new alternative dining restaurant is available on the line’s “three queens” – Queen Mary 2, Queen Victoria and Queen Elizabeth. Cunard’s team of chefs have curated a menu for the very best steakhouse at sea, in addition to a new selection of craft cocktails reflecting mixology trends from some of the world’s most dynamic cities.

Carnival Corporation’s Seabourn brand, the world’s finest ultra-luxury cruise line, announced in early January the introduction of Regiis Ova caviar on its fleet of five ships – an extension of Seabourn’s culinary partnership with Chef Thomas Keller through his new caviar company. The addition of the new caviar brand, set to take place across the Seabourn fleet during the first part of 2019, further elevates the brand’s sought-after caviar service, which is renowned throughout the luxury travel industry.

P&O Cruises (UK) announced that its newest ship, Iona, will debut in 2020 with a choice of 30 different bar and restaurant venues – the widest ever selection of places to eat and drink on a ship built exclusively for the British cruise holiday market. New innovative and flexible dining options include a “foodie” market offering cuisine from around the world, a new gastropub concept for the brand and a laid-back cocktail lounge. As part of the new approach to dining, Iona will exclusively offer Freedom Dining in all of its main restaurants, a first for P&O Cruises (UK) designed to give more flexibility to each and every guest. They can choose where and with whom they want to eat, and when they will sit down for breakfast, lunch or dinner.

Ongoing Partnerships with Renowned Chefs for Multi-Course Menus to Next-Level Classics
With numerous culinary experiences and dining options developed by some of the best award-winning chefs in the world available onboard, Carnival Corporation brands are serving meals that rival the best restaurants on land, delivering distinctive, exceptional dining experiences.

Since 2011, Carnival Cruise Line has partnered with celebrity chef and Food Network star Guy Fieri to bring Guy's Burger Joint to hungry travelers eager to dig into hand-crafted burgers and fresh-cut fries. With special recipes created exclusively for the brand, the Carnival favorite serves 5 million burgers a year. The restaurant is now featured on the brand’s ships across the fleet as part of its fleet enhancement program, which will be completed following a dry dock that will transform Carnival Victory into Carnival Radiance in 2020.

Bruno Barbieri, Master Chef Italy judge and 7-time Michelin-starred chef, began his career as a cruise ship chef and has been a longtime partner ofCosta Cruises. To celebrate the brand’s 70th birthday the Italian chef created a new four-course menu featuring 12 dishes that celebrate the cruise line’s unmistakable Italian style, taking diners on a voyage through the traditional Italian flavors that have inspired him – from antipasto in the Northern Italian style to a delectable dessert that transports guests’ palates to Southern Italy.

On board Princess Cruises ships at The Salty Dog Gastropub, developed in collaboration with Chef Ernesto Uchimura, known for his innovative and modern comfort food, guests can enjoy gourmet small plates and enticing twists on traditional pub favorites, including its signature burger, the “Ernesto,” voted Best Burger at Sea by Cruise Critic.

P&O Cruises (Australia) debuted the first Australian celebrity chef restaurant at sea when it introduced Salt grill by Luke Mangan in 2009, and thanks to guest demand, this extended to two more ships within 12 months.

In 2017, P&O Cruises (Australia) launched Luke’s grill on its flagship Pacific Explorer, offering al fresco dining overlooking the pool in a modern and relaxed setting. This became Luke’s fifth outlet across the current P&O Cruises (Australia) fleet with the chef already catering to tens of thousands of holidaymakers each week in Salt grill restaurants across the cruise line’s existing four ships.

For a more fine dining experience, guests can enjoy a Salt grill experience with a special ‘Taste of Salt’ dinner at Pacific Explorer’s Chef’s Table. The five-course degustation meal features some of Luke’s land-based favorites such as the ‘Glass’ Sydney crab omelet and Luke’s licorice parfait paired with matching Australian wines.

At The Grill by Thomas Keller on ultra-luxury brand Seabourn, guests are treated to a modern take on a classic American restaurant from the ‘50s and ‘60s. Created in partnership with Seabourn in 2015, The Grill is a unique culinary concept for Chef Keller, exclusive to Seabourn, focusing on updated versions of iconic dishes. 

Memorable Meals for Every Guest with Engaging and Immersive Onboard Offerings
For those who want to peer behind the curtain to see how the culinary magic happens, Carnival Corporation’s cruise line brands offer plenty of opportunities for guests to learn from legendary experts. 

During Holland America Line’s 2019 Food & Beverage Aficionado Cruises, participants will have the opportunity to attend cooking, cocktail or wine demonstrations showcasing the talents of Culinary Council members and other experts from famed New York-based chef David Burke to sushi master Andy Matsuda. Additionally, thanks to Holland America Line’s partnership with America’s Test Kitchen, guests can embrace their love of cooking alongside the experts during onboard cooking shows on every cruise, hosted by Holland America Line’s chefs. The brand recently announced five new shows starting in January 2019 – covering everything from tacos and takeout to dinner for two – that will join the 14 current shows and feature a mix of video, instruction and live recipe demonstrations.

In AIDA CruisesTim Malzer Cooking Studio on board AIDAprima and AIDAperla, adults and children can test out new tips and tricks to bring home. In the newly styled steakhouses named by the popular German TV chef, guests embark on a culinary journey: from Tim’s burger to his favorite cut or chocolate cake, there’s something for everyone.

P&O Cruises (UK) works with the brightest lights of the culinary scene to bring innovative, delicious menus and exclusive foodie experiences to its guests. Highlights include the brand’s carefully crafted Food Heroes experiences – gourmet experiences on shore and on board with iconic Chef Marco Pierre White, master patissier Eric Lanlard and award-winning wine expert Olly Smith. Guests can join the chefs on shore to explore a new destination through its culinary landscape, and meet the Food Heroes on board through master classes and hosted dinners on select sailings.

Princess Cruises also offers a culinary shore excursion program in collaboration with the number one food lifestyle brand, Bon Appetit, offering guests the opportunity to indulge in culinary experiences inspired by their surroundings while cruising to destinations around the globe. Guests can choose from 30 excursions to immerse themselves in local ingredients and cooking styles, as well as demonstrations and tastings from local chefs and personalities.

Tatiana Rokou

Tatiana is the news coordinator for TravelDailyNews Media Network (, and Her role includes monitoring the hundreds of news sources of TravelDailyNews Media Network and skimming the most important according to our strategy.

She holds a Bachelor's degree in Communication & Mass Media from Panteion University of Political & Social Studies of Athens and she has been editor and editor-in-chief in various economic magazines and newspapers.