Istanbul to Venice on Crystal Serenity
DATES : September 18 - 30, 2012 (12 Days)  CRUISE-ONLY FARES FROM : $3,995 Per Person


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Minarets & Monuments Minarets & Monuments Map
Enjoy complimentary enrichment that inspires and choices that impress with instruction in topics from Pilates to Photoshop. Also featured on every Crystal cruise is a delightful combination of entertainers and guest speakers that include world affairs experts, renowned writers and fascinating celebrities to talk about their professional experiences and share their insights.

Cruise 2320 - Minarets & Monuments

Istanbul to Venice
September 18 to September 30, 2012
12 Days (3 sea days) aboard Crystal Serenity

Theme: Crystal Wine & Food Festival


John Økland

Hotel Director

Josef Lumetsberger

Cruise Director

Gary Hunter

Maître D'

Leo Assmair

Crystal Society Hostess

Alissa Gustafsson

Cruise Sales Consultant

Daniele Puma

Headline Entertainers

Mark Haslam, Magician 
Gary Hunter, Ventriloquist 
Hector Olivera, Concert Organist
Emma Sinclair, Vocalist 

Lounge Pianists

Marcie Castro, Avenue Saloon
John Mentis, Crystal Cove

Production Shows

Featuring the Crystal Ensemble of Singers and Dancers
Across the Pond
Curtain Call
Million Dollar Musicals
Rocket Man: A Tribute to Elton John starring Jonathan Kane
Standing Room Only

(Please note: not all shows are performed on all cruises).

Crystal Visions Enrichment Program

Celebrity Guest Speaker

Neil Leifer (New York, NY)
When the London Observer listed the 50 greatest sporting images of all time, photographs by Neil Leifer ranked first and second. Now principally a producer and director of documentaries and short films, his pictures have appeared in every major magazine, including LIFE, Time, and Sports Illustrated. His 15 books include Sports, hailed by many as the best of its kind, and The Best of Leifer, a collection of forty years of pictures. He has photographed Olympics, World Cups, Kentucky Derbies, World Series, and Superbowls; every important heavyweight fight since 1959; and his favorite subject, Muhammad Ali, on almost 70 occasions.  

Special Interest Lecturer

Dr. Bulent Atalay (Fredericksburg, VA)
Bulent Atalay, a scientist, artist and author, has been described by NPR, PBS, Smithsonian and the Washington Post as a “Twenty-first Century Renaissance Man.” Dr. Atalay's academic background includes undergraduate and graduate training in theoretical physics at a number of universities including Georgetown, University of California-Berkeley, Princeton and Oxford. He travels around the world lecturing at academic institutions and on cruise ships on the "A-subjects," art, archaeology, astrophysics and atomic physics, confessing that he knows much less about the "B-subjects," business, banking, biology and botany.

An acclaimed Leonardo expert, Atalay is the author of two best selling books on the intersection of art, science and mathematics, with Leonardo, the pre-eminent Renaissance man, serving as the foil. His best selling book, Math and the Mona Lisa, has appeared in 13 languages. His last book, Leonardo's Universe, coauthored with classicist Keith Wamsley, so far is in two languages, English and Japanese. He is currently working on a new book for National Geographic Books entitled The Miracle Year, about Isaac Newton's explosive creativity during the Year of the Plague (1665-1666).

Special Interest Lecturer: Historian

Professor Adrian Kerr (Ft. Myers, FL)
Born in England, Kerr is a Professor of Ancient Civilizations and Cultures and is the Director for Continuing Education at Edison State College. He has spent the last thirty years researching, writing and broadcasting on the Ancient Civilizations of India, Persia, Afghanistan, Egypt, Iraq, Turkey, and the Levant. Professor Kerr is described as "a leading historical popularist." He is a published author and regularly appears on Fox television and PBS television and radio, contributing programs which focus on ancient history, culture and comparative religion. He is also in demand as a moderator for topical historical/political televised events and phone-ins. His work also regularly appears in the press particularly historical and travel journals.

Kerr is particularly well known and respected for the interactive popular talks he gives to inquiring audiences throughout the world and has been acclaimed for being able to present complex historical, political and religious issues in a straight forward, balanced and enjoyable manner. He is particularly noted for his ability to compress thousands of years of complex history into an enjoyable, often humorous, summary form which leaves audiences focused on the main events. He is a guest lecturer at various universities, communities and museums internationally. His latest book Ancient Egypt and Us was published in 2009 and focuses on Ancient Egypt’s impact on our lives today. His next book is a sister work on the Impact of ancient India, Afghanistan and Persia on modern life.

Kerr graduated with a First Class Honors degree from Leeds University before going on to conduct research in Iraq, India and Egypt. Earlier in his career he lived full time in India for three years and in Saudi Arabia for two years conducting research on the ancient history of the great civilizations of the Middle East and Indian sub continent. He is a specialist on the development and interaction between these ancient civilizations and cultures. Kerr has a particular passion for the development of the architectural style and function of their temples forts and palaces.

Special Interest Lecturer: Journalist and Author

Thomas W. Lippman (Washington, D.C.)
Thomas W. Lippman is an award-winning author and journalist who has specialized in Middle East affairs and American foreign policy for 35 years. He is a former Middle East bureau chief of The Washington Post, and throughout the 1990s was a national security and diplomatic affairs correspondent for the Post. Lippman is the author of numerous magazine articles, book reviews, and op-ed columns and of five books, the most recent of which, Arabian Knight: Colonel Bill Eddy USMC and the Rise of American Power in the Middle East, on the early history of US relations with the Arab world, received a Ben Franklin award as the best biography of 2008. His new book is about the future of Saudi Arabia. A frequent commentator on cable news, Lippman has also appeared on the BBC and on PBS’s Think Tank and The Charlie Rose Show. Several of his lectures have been televised nationally by C-SPAN. As a senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations and an adjunct scholar at the Middle East Institute, he has traveled frequently to Saudi Arabia and other countries in the region throughout the past decade.

*Theme Presentations: Crystal Wine & Food Festival

Guest Chef

Jon Ashton (Chicago, IL)
Jon worked in several noted restaurants including the Derby Lodge Hotel's French restaurant and as Sous Chef at The Kirkfield Hotel's restaurant. Jon's success and flair in the kitchen soon gave way to appearances on British cooking shows including the nationally syndicated TV Dinners. Upon landing in America, he produced his own TV show, airing in Disney's town of Celebration, which led to a position as the regular mid-day chef at Orlando's FOX affiliate station. After appearances on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno and the Today Show, he became the food correspondent of the nationally syndicated Morning Show The Daily Buzz and the in-house Chef for Relish magazine. Jon can be seen on ABC, NBC, CBS and FOX affiliates across the nation as he travels doing media tours and presentations.

Guest Chef

Hans Peter Fink (Ilz, Austria)
Hans Peter Fink is an award-winning master chef. He was the former executive chef of the famous Hotel Sacher, Vienna and has been internationally recognized with the awards "Bocuse d'Or"-Lyon, "Prix Taittinger"-Paris, and the "Gault Millau".

Wine Expert

Dr. Patrick Farrell (Huntington Beach, CA)
Dr. Patrick Farrell has an impressive background that ranges from science to wine. He received an honors degree in biology and earned an MD at the University of Rochester, and completed two residencies at the Cornell Medical Center- New York Hospital as well as a fellowship at the University of Southern California. Dr. Farrell was also a certified wine educator before becoming a Master of Wine in 1998, becoming the first MD, MW in the world. He remains one of the fewer than 300 masters of wine in the world and less than 30 in North America. During his wine career thus far, he has been a mentor, educator and examiner for the Institute of Masters of Wine. Dr. Farrell has brought world class scientific knowledge and wine credentials to Inventive Technologies, Inc. and the Bev Wizard Company where he has been involved in the design, testing and creation of the products that decrease the bitterness, bit and harness in wine, whiskey, juices, tea and chocolate.


Ira Mashihina (Cherkasy, Ukraine)
Ira Mashykhina is one of the most highly awarded Ukrainian baristas. Ira went to school at Kiev's Hotel Management College in Ukraine, later educating herself at various bartending schools in the U.S. and Russia. She has also been trained as a "Coffee Expert" from the Universita del Caffe in Italy. While buildling her career in bartending at several locations in Kiev, Ira has flourished in her position as Chief Bartender at Kiev's boutiquebar Biancoro. It is here at this restaurant that Ira showcases her passion of mixing and presenting cocktails as a form of art. Ira has also been frequently awarded as the top 3 winners in multiple barista championships in Ukraine and most recently placing 3rd at Pernod Ricard's Mixology Cup.

The Crystal Cruises Creative Learning Institute

Our innovative series of complimentary interactive classes created to enhance our guests quality of life in the areas of Arts & Entertainment, Business & Technology, Lifestyle & Wellness. Guests receive a certificate of completion at the end of the curriculum.

Arts & Entertainment

Passport To Music presented by Yamaha and Crystal Cruises: Instructor Debbie Skinner (Portland, OR) teaches an innovative and fun course as an introduction to keyboard playing for adults. Tradition and technology meet in harmony to create this progressive piano-style program. With an emphasis on hands-on learning using Yamaha's exciting portable keyboards supported by the Clavinova digital piano, guests learn nearly a dozen songs during the cruise. An overview of general musical skills, including listening skills and note reading is included, as well as fun group activities such as music trivia and name that song. Passport To Music is designed for those with little or no previous keyboard experience.

Odyssey Art At Sea Instructor

Get your creative juices flowing using a variety of media in classes taught by our specially trained Odyssey Art at Sea instructor Marlene Batoff (Sunny Isles Beach, FL). 

Computer University@Sea

Lead Technology Concierge Jessie Moncatar plus Instructors Mike Newell (Vero Beach, FL) and Judy Koehler (Vero Beach, FL). Our popular Computer University@Sea program: expanded curriculum of complimentary lectures and classes on a variety of computer-related topics, plus e-mail instruction in our computer center, equipped with 25 state-of-the-art workstations, all equipped for e-mail and Internet access (fees apply).


Berlitz Foreign Language Instruction: Italian classes, focusing on basic vocabulary and phrases to help guests communicate in foreign countries, are taught by certified Berlitz Language instructor Mario Barbi (Florence, KY).


Crystal Cruises' exclusive Walk-on-Water program features The WALKVEST® Training System which revolutionizes walking simply by adding resistance (added weight) to your walk.

Nordic Walking
Crystal Cruises is the only cruise line to offer a Nordic Walking program to help you get more out of your limited exercise time on board. The use of lightweight poles for stability and balance will facilitate your fitness needs even if you have knee or hip issues. Two specially designed adjustable poles work the upper body while walking. Like cross country skiing, the poles are used by the arms to match each step the person takes. Our Fitness Staff will guide you to quickly be deck-walking for fun and fitness. You will be using feather weight aluminum poles provided by the market leader, LEKI®.

Golf Teaching Professional

Roberto Borgatti (New York, NY)
Roberto Borgatti conducts golf clinics for all levels of players, and seminars for teaching professionals around the world. He is a much sought-after clinician for professional golf associations and regularly prepares tour players for competitions. Roberto also conducts playing clinics for corporate outings of Fortune 500 companies and charity events. During the winter season he is the featured instructor at the Long Boat Key Club in Florida. Roberto’s comprehensive approach combines sound methodology, fitness training and state-of-the art V1 Professional video swing-analysis technology. Roberto has coached top players from the United States, China, France, Canada and Spain. They include Belen Mozo Palacios, the current British Women’s Amateur Champion, Davyn Nola, a six-time World Long Drive finalist, and Arlene McKitrick, with 137 worldwide tournament victories. Roberto has also instructed golfers of all skill levels in such countries as Australia, Spain, England, Germany, Thailand, Ireland, Denmark, Czech Republic, Cuba, Bolivia, Brazil, Argentina, China, and France. His instructional methods have been featured in Golf Digest’s Golf for Women and Europe’s Canal Plus Television. Roberto is the author of A Swing You Can Trust, which was released in 2007 by Simon & Schuster.
Our exclusive program features TaylorMade, the best performance golf company in the world and #1 driver in golf.

ACBL Bridge Instructors

Polly and Richard Pekruhn (Charleston, SC)
Beginner and intermediate bridge classes, and afternoon games.

Catholic Clergy

Bishop Raymond Boland (Kansas City, MO)

Jewish Clergy

Rabbi Steven Foster (Denver, CO)

Dance Team/Instructors

Curtis Collins (Los Angeles, CA) and Beverly Durand (Thousand Oaks, CA)
Daily dance classes on sea days, and private lessons by appointment.

Ambassador Hosts

Mo Abdel-Ghany (Tuscaloosa, AL)
Emery Lendvay (Madison, OH)
Bob Marinaro
(Ashburn, VA)
Burt Slatus (Boca Raton, FL)

List as of 9/7/2012. All Crystal Visions Enrichment Program personnel, entertainers, dates and itineraries are subject to change without notice.
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