Botti at Sea ’24 completed its triumphant inaugural sailing on Thursday and the entire Jazz Cruises team is now back at home. The cruise was an amazing experience, filled with some of the most versatile, varied, and high-powered talent we have ever presented. Chris Botti’s show, complete with his entire touring band and performers, led off the cruise in style. The ensuing nights featured the incomparable Gregory Porter, who left the audience in awe of his amazing voice, towering talent, and soulful spirit. Reprising their dual billing from our August Las Vegas show, Alonzo Bodden opened for Gregory.

Then we were dazzled by the David Foster/Katharine McPhee show. Though a full 90 minutes long, their performance was not long enough to showcase all the tunes that Foster either wrote or produced. Their band included the legendary John Robinson (JR), the single most recorded drummer in music and featured other vocalists and special guests. It was a tour de force.

To many, Katharine McPhee stole the show with her beautiful voice, stunning wardrobe and acrobatic on-stage movements. Despite a slight swell in our ship’s voyage, she managed to jump on the piano, dance on a chair, and move about on-stage like a ballerina. Fabulous performance.

For Jazz Cruises, the highlight of the show was David Foster’s announcement that he and Katharine will be returning to perform on Botti at Sea II (’25). That statement brought the house down with applause.

The talent did not end there. The week featured Samara Joy, Melody Gardot, Lisa Fischer, Take 6, Keb Mo, and José James bringing great music to our guests in various configurations and groupings. Randy Brecker, Emmet Cohen, Wycliffe Gordon and others joined our Musical Director Eric Marienthal as the Jazz Cruises’ All Stars filled the afternoons and evenings with jazz favorites and special tunes. They were fantastic.

John Splithoff, though billed as a member of Chris Botti’s band was a runaway hit as headliner performer filling to the brim every venue in which he performed. Look for great things for him in the future.

One of the hits of the cruise was not a musical performance, but a dazzling display by Lior Suchard, one of the world’s top mentalists. The guests were awestruck by his abilities and skills. He will certainly be coming back in future years. I would contact him now about other cruises, but he already knows what I am talking about! 😊

Being back home is great, but only because we know that over the last four weeks, 8,000 guests had a great, great time on the cruise programs. The smiling faces and words of gratitude are indelible in our minds and it was our privilege and honor to provide such enjoyment. The Jazz Cruises’ team lives for the weeks at sea. We plan all year long to make our guests’ vacations memorable.

On behalf of all Jazz Cruises’ Staff Members, thank you to every guest who sailed on The Jazz Cruise ’24, The Smooth Jazz Cruise ’24.1, The Smooth Jazz Cruise ’24.2 and Botti at Sea ’24. We enjoyed every guest and every minute of those sailings.


Every cruise we have produced for years has included a Q & A session during which Michael Lazaroff, Executive Director, answered questions about the operations of Jazz Cruises. Cruise Operations Director Brad Pavlik, Production Manager Brian Rachko, Music Director Eric Marienthal, Cruise Events Director Mario Vines and Guest Relations Director Aubrey Pavlik often join him and lend their expertise to the discussion.

Far and away, the most often asked question is “when will you do another West Coast sailing?” With that background, Jazz Cruises is proud to announce a brand new program, one that will include a broader range of great music and jazz as well as the most dynamic and exciting excursion opportunities since we docked in New Orleans.

The cruise, titled Journey of Jazz, will depart from Vancouver, B.C. on September 12, 2025 and will sail to Los Angeles disembarking on September 19, 2025, with exciting stops in Victoria, B.C., and San Francisco.

Journey of Jazz will be an homage to the most authentic and inspirational American music genre… jazz. By both word and sound, this cruise will be a 7 day and night voyage though the world of jazz from its origins to today’s influences, with a major commitment to honoring the genre’s icons.

Superstars Marcus Miller and Gregory Porter will be your travel guides for this once in a lifetime Journey of Jazz.

The stay in San Francisco is an overnight with two full days for excursions into Napa and Sonoma as well as special shows at SF Jazz. We are planning a very exciting stay in the Bay Area!

We are especially excited to announce that Celebrity Summit, the host ship for our recently completed ’24 sailings, as well as our previously announced ’25 sailings, will be our ship for Journey of Jazz. For those familiar with the geography of North America, you may be wondering how our Caribbean based ship winds up in Vancouver.

That is simple, Celebrity Summit is deployed during the summer on Alaskan based itineraries. When we take over the ship in September ’25, that will be the first leg of a journey through the Panama Canal for its winter sailings back in the Caribbean. Celebrity Summit has become our true home away from home.

March 15, 2024 is the Official Announcement Date for Journey of Jazz! At that time, we will share the lineup, the full itinerary, and the Reservation Procedure.

Botti at Sea ’24 Highlights

The inaugural sailing of Botti at Sea ’24 was an amazing week of great music and great events. Hundreds of photos will soon be available, but for now, check out this sample section from the cruise.


Robin D. & Richard B. – Florida
Maria T. – California

Guests on the ’24 jazz cruises received The Weekender mug, which we hope you will use with your Saturday morning coffee while you read the latest edition. Please share a picture of yourself & your mug with us so that we can include it for the 100,000+ folks who receive The Weekender each Saturday.

Tag us @thejazzcruise @bottiatsea @thesmoothjazzcruise #jazzcruises and #theweekender. Email your photo to [email protected].

Jazz Cruises’ ’25 Programs

The Jazz Cruise ’25
Celebrating its 25th Anniversary

The Jazz Cruise ’25 is 82% reserved and is currently in “Open Booking,” where anyone may reserve any available stateroom. You may view current stateroom availability and start your reservation on the website now.

The Smooth Jazz Cruise ‘25.1 & ‘25.2
Starting its 3rd Decade

With both sailings being fully reserved, guests wishing to sail on a ’25 sailing of The Smooth Jazz Cruise should JOIN WAITLIST now. Cancellations will be filled exclusively from the WAITLIST.

Botti at Sea II
(’25 Sailing)

Botti at Sea II began “Open Booking” on March 5, 2024 and is over 50% reserved. Anyone may reserve any available stateroom either by calling the office during regular business hours or doing so online.

Journey of Jazz ’25
Jazz Life at Sea & On Land 

Jazz Cruises’ newest program, Journey of Jazz ’25, hosted by Marcus Miller & Gregory Porter is currently in the stateroom Selection Process for Pre-Sale Reservation holders. “Open Booking” will begin on April 30, 2024.

For more information about the cruise, the lineup of musicians (as of today), full itinerary, pricing and reservation process, go to www.journeyofjazz.com.

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