Operator of the highest rated and longest continually-sailing luxury cruise ship in the South Pacific, Paul Gauguin Cruises is offering guests a two-week itinerary to experience the vibrant Maori culture, unfailing friendliness, and passion for the sea for which New Zealand is famous. The m/s Paul Gauguin offers two sailings in 2010 to exotic New Zealand – the ships first-ever sailing to New Zealand – departing November 6th and November 21st. President & CEO Richard Bailey will accompany guests onboard to experience his home – the islands of French Polynesia – followed by extraordinary New Zealand. Both sailings allow guests to immerse themselves in the lively harbor of Auckland, the French sophistication of Tahiti, and the rugged terrain of Rarotonga on this two-week cruise that beautifully showcases the paradise of the South Pacific.

“We are pleased to offer two departures of this itinerary, which represent the m/s Paul Gauguin’s first-ever sailing to New Zealand – long a favorite destination for travelers who love spectacular scenery, a touch of the exotic, and the warm hospitality of an English-speaking people” says Richard Bailey.

The m/s Paul Gauguin embarks from Papeete, Tahiti, sailing through azure waters of the South Seas, quickly reaching the lush vegetation, exotic fruits and flowers, and breathtaking mountain peaks of Moorea. Guests will have the opportunity to experience Motu Mahana, Paul Gauguin Cruises’ private island in Taha’a comprised of idyllic white sand beaches which play host to a barbeque lunch exclusive to guests aboard the m/s Paul Gauguin. Next is Bora Bora, famous for its colorful villages and unsurpassed beauty.

Guests will then sail to the Cook Islands, home to large and beautiful lagoons perfect for snorkeling, then pass through the quiet beauty of Tonga, the only island nation in the South Pacific never to have been colonized. When the ship arrives in New Zealand, guests will immediately experience the ‘Bay of Islands,’ an area on the northeast tip of New Zealand steeped in culture and history. After exploring the city of Tauranga, a fascinating geothermal region protected by Matakana Island, guests will finish their journey of the South Pacific in beautiful Auckland, the largest city in the country which is home to lush forests, a diverse and sophisticated culture, golden-sand beaches, and majestically blue skies.

In honor of the first-ever New Zealand sailing, Paul Gauguin Cruises has organized a number of special events for the voyages. Guests onboard will enjoy:

• President’s cocktail reception

• “Town Hall”-style meeting to share the company’s philosophy, their commitment to conservation, and news about eco-friendly developments.

• Series of special lectures by renowned archaeologist Mark Eddowes

• Commemorative gift