First Lady of the Sea

Meet the first woman to captain a new cruise ship at launch. All aboard with Capt Serena Melani at the helm of the new “Seven Seas Splendor”. Capt Melani began her nautical career at age 16 as a cadet while still at school, working on cargo ships in her hometown Livorno, Italy. Regent Seven Seas Cruises’ bio also says Capt Melani was one of only a few women to have senior roles on oil tankers, cargo and container vessels.
Congratulations, Capt Serena Melani!

#travel_media #airlines #cruising #cruise #hotels #cuisine #food #travel #holidays #tourism #vacation


Sihanoukville dispatches: How to put this tactfully… Don’t expect a tourism Phoenix to rise from these ashes and rubble; at best, maybe a gold/jade balut egg. This is Lord of the Rings alternate ending where Sauron wins. Star Wars, where the Empire has demolished the rebel freedom fighters’ last base, is rebuilding it as a Mega-Death Star, and Darth Vader now speaks Mandarin. A game of Monopoly, where you pass Sihanoukville, and go straight to Otres Beach and collect $100. Serendipity Beach I have renamed as Calamity Cove. An hour in Sihanoukville is an hour you could have spent somewhere nice…



Take the menu board at the Dogs’ Bar in St Kilda, Melbourne: Italian carbonara – you can’t go wrong, kids love it. French beef cheek rague (what’s rague, you ask? Obviously, it’s the chef’s fusion of ragu and ragout. Derrr). Salmon “+ prawn pie” – a fancy British fish pie. Indian goat vindaloo – I consider vindaloo the neutron bomb of cuisine, it wipes out everything (but perfect for winter). At $20-$25, all good value. BTW goat is acknowledged as the world’s most widely eaten quadruped per capita; but pork is by volume.



#dunk_island #south_molle #daydream_island #whitsunday_islands #great_barrier_reef 

Queensland’s famous island resorts, once like a string of pearls along a tropical coast, are now mostly dots of decay.

They will only be profitable when rebuilt with low-cost materials easily maintained, dismantled and reassembled. Synthetics don’t last in the hot, wet tropics; furniture’s mouldy in 2 years. Painting is pointless. Buildings will be smashed by cyclones; expect to replace every 10 years. What’s the solution? Perhaps a relook at bamboo and rattan? Stop trying to fight nature, and embrace it. These islands are among the best destinations in the world. We have to do something…