Best New Ship: Quantum of the Seas
"Quantum of the Seas is all about innovation," said Cruise Critic. "Bumper cars and skydiving at sea grab the headlines, but the ship itself is simply revolutionary. The technology available onboard makes staying in touch a snap, and thoughtful details like USB ports in cabins and interactive kiosks for booking onboard activities are perfect for the modern cruiser."
Quantum of the Seas
Best Ship Refurbishment: Oceania Cruises (R-Class)
"Three of the loveliest ships afloat, even before 2014's $50 million refurbishment, Oceania's 694-passenger trio reflects the contemporary ambience of Marina and Riviera, the fleet's newer siblings," said the web site editors. "Our favorite aspects? The luxe makeovers of cabins, from new mattresses to splendidly redesigned suites, the French Riviera-inspired pool deck revamp and the addition of Barista's coffee bar."
Best For Luxury: Ponant Yacht Cruises & Expeditions
"The French Ponant, which has three 264-passenger yachts with another launching in 2015, offers adventurous itineraries framed by luxury onboard," Cruise Critic said. "All have ice-strengthened hulls for travel to the Arctic and Antarctic, plus a fleet of zodiacs for sightseeing in out-of-the-way ports. From cabins and restaurants to the spa, the nautical decor is upscale yet low-key."
Ponant Yacht Cruises & Expeditions
Best for Families: Disney Cruise Line
"Disney proves its understanding of what's important to parents by providing a cruise vacation that is fun and relaxing for kids and adults of all ages," the web site editors said. "It covers the basics with creativity and flair, then goes beyond with thoughtful touches that make it easier to travel as a family."
Disney Cruise Line
Best Itineraries: Princess Cruises
"In addition to its battery of standard Caribbean, Canada/New England and Europe sailings, Princess is known for offering standout Alaska voyages. Throw in bucket-list destinations like the Panama Canal, Australia/New Zealand and Tahiti, as well as world cruises that last more than 100 days, and you'll understand why Princess takes 2014's top honors for itineraries."
Best for Adventure: International Expeditions
"Primarily a land tour company, International Expeditions offers ship-based explorations of the Peruvian Amazon and the Galapagos Islands," said Cruise Critic. "What's special about IE's cruises is how much the regions are incorporated into the experience, both onboard and in port. Particularly special are the guides, chefs and crew that create a family ambience onboard."
Best Dining: Oceania Cruising
"Variety abounds when it comes to dining on Oceania's ships, which feature world-class gourmet options with an open-seating scenario in its main dining rooms," the web site said. "Where the ships really shine, though, is with their included alternative restaurants: Asian Red Ginger and French Jacques, named for the line's famous executive culinary director, Jacques Pepin."
Best Value for Money: Carnival Cruise Lines
"When cruisers book with Carnival, they get great included features like waterslides, Guy's Burger Joint and the Seuss at Sea family program. To make sure passengers get more bang for their bucks, the line introduced Carnival Live, its fun, well-priced concert series. The icing? Carnival's Great Vacation Guarantee -- proving the line's confidence in its product."
Carnival Cruise Lines
Best Entertainment: Norwegian Cruise Line
"From the sing-along fun of Legends in Concert on Norwegian Epic to the head-banging joy of 'Rock of Ages' on Norwegian Breakaway and sizzling Latin sounds of Burn the Floor on Getaway, Norwegian Cruise Line is all about entertainment. Fleetwide, you'll find musical revues, comedy and jazz on all Norwegian vessels."
Norwegian Cruise Line
Best Suites: Celebrity Cruises
According to Cruise Critic's editors, Celebrity's suite perks set it apart. "Nearly every suite level includes butler service and upgraded amenities like in-suite dining and at least one complimentary dinner at an alternative restaurant. The 1,636-square-foot Reflection Suite is over the top, with two bedrooms, two bathrooms, a 194-square-foot verandah and a glass shower that hangs over the side of the ship."
Best Inside Cabins: Royal Caribbean International
"When Royal Caribbean introduced virtual balconies into some inside cabins on Navigator of the Seas, the line surpassed its competition. The cabins, also found on Quantum of the Seas, give passengers the feeling of being in an outside cabin via real-time video from outside the ship that's piped in and displayed on wall-sized digital screens."
Royal Caribbean International