Entries Tagged as 'Britain'

Stag & Hen night ideas? Try a P&O Ferries Hull to Rotterdam minicruise

Struggling to come up with a legendary Stag or Hen night to give a proper send off for a friend taking the plunge? Karim Beerahee has a look at an option involving a boat.


A quick ferry across the channel could just be exactly what’s needed. The Hull to Rotterdam ferry from P&O will take you and your mates to Rotterdam in one of their two luxury cruise ferries. The ferries are fully decked out with on-board casino and bar. Take the trip overnight and stay in one of the cabins to awaken to a fresh and full day of Stag and Hen Weekend revelry.

Once in Rotterdam you may want to hang about to check out the club-scene. It is fast growing as a hub in Europe that pioneers club music. Rotterdam itself is a great place to have a look about, but if you want something a little extra take a trip up to Amsterdam, just an hour away by train.

From Rotterdam you can quickly get to a couple of other countries too, so if you’re looking for a quick tour of northern Europe it can easily be done. A fast paced drinking trip spanning multiple nations would make for a great send off before wedding day.

For a stag night you really need to try something new, so if you’ve never been, a group trip to Amsterdam would, without fail, give you a night to remember. Train journeys from Rotterdam in to Amsterdam are inexpensive, or simply forget the city and make it a road trip for fast access to Europe and an unforgettable Stag or Hen do.

P&O’s new ship Spirit of France takes to the water, full launch in September

The Spirit of France, P&O Ferries’ new vessel for the Dover-Calais route, was floated out of its construction dock in Finland last month. Matthias Scherer takes a look at this mightly impressive ship.


The construction of both the Spirit of Britain and its ‘sister’ vessel, the Spirit of France, signifies a milestone in P&O Ferries’ history. At a combined cost of around £3m, the two ships have doubled P&O’s carrying capacity and will be the largest ferries operating on the Dover-Calais route.

On 18 February, the Spirit of France was floated out of the construction dock at the STX shipyard in Rauma, Finland. P&O officials were on board, despite freezing temperatures, to observe the exciting occasion of the flooding of the dry dock to allow the ship to float out.

The ‘twin sister’ tag of the Spirit of France is very well-deserved – it is every bit as imposing as the Spirit of Britain, which was officially named last week. It is 213m long, and it can carry 1,750 passengers and 1,079 cars. Obviously, it has the same remarkably well-designed passenger decks, including lounges and bars, to make every P&O Ferry journey as pleasant and comfortable as possible.

You will have to hold out a bit longer until you can book your ferry trip, however – The Spirit of France is due to join the Spirit of Britain on the channel route in September

Ferry collides with fishing boat between Jersey and France

Nero Multimedia Suite 10

A high-speed ferry collided with a smaller fishing boat beetween Jersey and France this morning, leaving one fisherman seriously injured.

The Condor Vitesse was travelling between St Malo, France, and St Helier, Jersey, when it struck the boat around 8am today. According to eyewitnesses, there was heavy fog, with visibility down to 30 metres. A doctor aboard the Condor Vitesse gave emergency treatment to the injured man.

The injured fisherman is believed to be a 42-year-old man, and is said to be in a “serious” condition. He has been taken to hospital. According to the Guernsey Press, the ferry was travelling at around 37 knots (ca. 43mph), and the fishing boat sank after the collision.

A rescue helicopter was sent to the scene of the accident, but had to abort its attempts at rescue due to the poor weather conditions.

A spokesperson for the Jersey Police said: “The incident occurred northwest of Chausey (French waters) and is being dealt with by the French authorities at this time.

“It is believed that all persons have been accounted for from both boats and that three persons from the French fishing vessel were recovered from the water although the extent of any injuries to those casualties is still being established. There are no reported casualties from the Condor Vitesse.”

A statement released by Condor ferries said: “Condor Vitesse is currently involved in a search and rescue operation in the vicinity of the Minquiers following a possible collision with a fishing vessel.

“Further updates will be issued as more information becomes available. The ship was en route between St Malo and St Helier Jersey on Monday 28th March 2011.”

Spirit of Britain profile

The Spirit of Britain entered Dover Harbour for the first time on the 9th of January 2011. She had her launch yesterday after being named by twice gold medallist Dame Kelly Holmes. We’re bringing you a brief summary of some of the more impressive facts about this mammoth vessel.


Spirit of France and the Spirit of Britain are junior to any other ferry in the fleet at Dover by 4 years. The oldest being the Pride of Calais which is due to be withdrawn from service this year for the Spirit of France to takeover.

P&O’s new ferry is larger than the London ‘gherkin’ by 18 metres, measuring a whopping 213 metres in total. The overall cost of this ferry was £157m.

She runs at a total speed of 22 knots a slightly, roughly 25 miles per hour, and has a deadweight of 9,118 tons. It took about 3 years from contract signing until the Spirit of Britain sailed in to Dover Harbour.

The bridge section was constructed separately and lifted into position this time last year.

Expansion of ferries has consistently grown since 1904 when the first car across the channel. The Spirit of Britain has near 56% greater tonnage then the Pride of Canterbury but will hold the same passenger capacity of 2000. The greater tonnage will go to support the 50 more Lorries and 350 more cars then the Pride of Canterbury can carry.

So what’s next for ferries? Designs are drawn up for double-ended vessels so there’ll be less delay now that the ferry won’t have to turn around in harbour. The Spirit of Britain and The Spirit of France are the first new ferries for four years so expect a bit of wait before any new ships start across the channel.

Fashion Week sweeps across Europe

fashion week in europe

Today marks the last day of Paris Fashion Week and fashionistas everywhere are already planning their autumn winter wardrobes around what they’ve seen. Rosie Khdir takes a look at what is still to come in Fashion Week shows across Europe.

As model strut down catwalks in Amsterdam’s the newest and finest designer looks for autumn/winter 2011-2012, we are still reeling from the beautiful revelations at Paris Fashion week which finishes today.

Chanel is one show where every seat is coveted and this year, the labels famous and fabulous designer Karl Lagerfield, did not disappoint.

Elegant models premiered Lagerfield’s latest creations in a rather small, intimate show (compared to previous years) in an old bank situated opposite the old apartment of none other than Coco Chanel herself!

Classic nude tones and Chanel tweeds made an appearance as well as slim-fit trousers under tunic dresses – perhaps inspiration taken from Middle Eastern and Asian cultures for this collection.

One surprise on the catwalk was the distinct lack of high-heels, indicating that flat pumps may be the height of fashion this coming autumn (I hear sighs of relief from women with aching feet, all over the world).

Other designers that showed at Paris Fashion week included Givenchy, Maurizio Galante, Khaled el Masri and Jean Paul Gaultier.

Now Amsterdam International Fashion Week has begun and the likes of Jantaminiau and INDIVIDUALS by AMFI already wowing audiences, and it looks set to be another greta year for fashion.

Amsterdam International Fashion Week ends on 30th January but prepare yourselves for our very own London Fashion Week, starting on 18th February 2011!

Image credit: Art Comments

Book a journey on the new Spirit of Britain!

Spirit of Britain

We were all excited to see the maiden voyage of the Spirit of Britain, P&O Ferries’ new super ship and now it time for the offers!

From today you can get your hands of one of only 400,000 tickets for a one way journey on the Spirit of Britain for only £30 for any duration including a car. There are also 40,000 one way tickets at £30 for any duration car inclusive during the peak travel period 22nd July to 4th September 2011.

The Spirit of Britain is a luxurious new ship that has been built to accommodate the busy Dover to Calais service and has space for up to 1,750 passengers.

On board, passengers can relax in one of the many new resting and dining areas, and buy duty paid goods in the brand new, designer-stocked store.

The offer ends at 10pm, 1st Feb 2011 and there are a limited number of tickets as you can see, so be sure to book nice and early! Click here to book now.

Spirit of Britain makes maiden voyage today!

Spirit of Britain

The much talked about Spirit of Britain, P&O Ferries’ new €180 million super ferry, has set sail for the very time this morning. Rosie Khdir reports.

Making its first Dover to Calais sailing, the Spirit of Britain will be showing off its revoluntionary design.

It has a unique hull that reduces drag in the shallow Channel, enhancing fuel economy – this is great for running costs, for the environment and for customers who are looking for low ferry fares.

The 49,000 ton ferry is more luxurious than previous P&O Ferries ships and will provide customers with a comfortable journey across the Channel, currently unmatched by any other operator.

For example, the Spirit of Britain features huge floor to ceiling picture windows with stained glass, as well as quality fittings in the bars and restaurants. If you want to travel in the ultimate style and luxury then the ship’s Club Lounge is simply stunning and comes with its very own private sheltered deck

There is a choice of eateries on board including the revered Brasserie, with its waiter service and traditional British dishes, or alternatively the self service International Food Court, offering a wide range of delicious cuisines from Oriental to Continental.

Children will find amusement on board in the Horizon Family Lounge which has tables and chairs for toddlers and small children and a sound-proofed video game arcade for teenagers.

Freight drivers do not get overlooked on board the Spirit of Britain; they will receive five star treatment in the Routemasters Lounge, complete with private showers, restaurant, relaxation area with recliners and a seat back entertainment system, plus their own outside deck area.

Helen Deeble, chief executive of P&O Ferries, said:

“We are delighted to welcome this fantastic new ship to Dover ready to start service later this month. She offers a leap forward in terms of her size and the quality of the build and I’m confident that she’ll provide a fantastic experience for all of the customers who will travel on her in the years to come.”

The Spirit of Britain for Calais five times per 24 hours and standard return ticket prices start at £39 each way for a car and up to nine passengers travelling throughout 2011. For more information on how to book your Channel crossing on the Spirit of Britain click here.

Explore Normandy by motorbike


If you are looking for a break that offers more that your average routine of shuffling round museums, sitting by the pool and sightseeing on foot, then why not try exploring the countryside of Normandy on a legendary motorbike? Rosie Khdir finds out more…

What could be better than speeding along the picturesque Normandy countryside with the wind wiping at your ears? Well, you can now experience this for yourself thanks to an association of enthusiasts “Normandie Motorcyclisme” who restore old motorbikes and rent them out to tourists.

This is a holiday for those of you who want a bit of an adrenaline rush with your pretty views and tasty French delicacies. You will begin by meeting members of this association who will help you choose a suitable bike and recommend a few itineraries.

Once you are set, you will head off onto the open road, whizzing along country roads and taking in the fresh air and beautiful surroundings without the obstruction of a car/coach window.

Along the way you can stop at local inns and hotels and savour the gastronomic delights from local farms. After you stop for the night make sure you try the local Calvados, cider and beers – the perfect refreshment after a day on the road.

The Association are happy to make prior reservations for you to help your trip run as smoothly as possible. These trips runs from Friday to Sunday only and for prices and more information visit normandiemotorcyclisme.com.

P&O Ferries can help you start your journey with our Dover to Calais service from just £30 for a car and up to nine people.

Image credit: Rainer Ebert

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