When heroes travel – local news

Heaven laughed at the angels of everyday life. The sun god also gave one and 20 BILD am SONNTAG winners great weather on their round trip from Palma via La Spezia, Civitavecchia (near Rome), Marseille and Barcelona.

In this way, the selected champions can truly enjoy their dream vacation in the new AIDAcosma.

The group of nurses, prison officials and refugee aides visited some of the most beautiful big cities, spent raucous afternoons in the Jacuzzi and dined at the 17 onboard restaurants.

Captain Vincent Kovalka (46) and General Manager Heidi Roth (41) let a look behind the scenes.

While hotelier Ralf Siebelt (67) was allowed to glimpse the operations in the kitchen, students André Bär (23) and Thore Flechsig (26) were able to watch the beer being brewed on the luxury steamer.


Journey to the beginning of their love: Sandra and Stephen Merlinger met in Barcelona in 1985 (small photo)Foto: privat

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Journey to the beginning of their love: Sandra and Stephen Merlinger met in Barcelona in 1985 (small photo)Photo: special

Pediatric nurses Lisa Beiser and Fabian Muller (both 30) from Darmstadt (Hesse) tested the wellness area. Lisa: “The rest served us well! But we still wanted to train the abdominal muscles, so we quickly returned to the set BILD am SONNTAG. Then the most important exercise of the program was: laughter from the heart. “

Read what the other angels experienced on this tour!

The Merklinger couple and their happiness in Barcelona

Sandra Merklinger, 51, and her husband Stephen, 54, met from Krefeld in Barcelona in 1985 – but failed to exchange contacts.

Sandra to BamS: “In 2012 we found each other on the Internet, in 2014 we got married in love.” Then the shock: Stephen developed amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) last year – a serious, terminal illness of the nervous system.

Sandra: “Life expectancy is still three years.” Her Biggest Wish: A cruise to the city where her love began.

The office manager was quoted: “We’ve only taken the bus around Barcelona for one ride, but it’s been like a ride for the past 37 years.


Sandra and Stephen Merkelinger in Barcelona in 1985Foto: privat

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Sandra and Stephen Merkelinger in Barcelona in 1985Photo: special

I cried with joy in Plaza Catalunya.” In order to be able to take part in the cruise, Sandra had to make a special menu for Stephen with the responsible people.

Steffen admired: “There was a lot of puree, but I only enjoyed the food on this trip. Sometimes I can forget about my illness.”

AIDA celebrates winner Tobias

Touching moment! Tobias Feuerbach (34, photo) and friend Felix Erhardt (43) met flood workers in the Ahr Valley.

Together they won the trip – and Tobias went even better! The employee reached the chair in the test of who wants to be a millionaire.

The family man (three children) worked his way from question to question and captivated the audience in the theater. Then the crucial question: “Who purrs like a cat?”

Feuerbach bet on a lynx from four predators and was the first guest in ten years to win the main prize: a €5,000 cruise! Tobias: “I can’t believe my luck. The atmosphere on the ship was like a football pitch.”


AIDAcosma is 337 meters long and has 20 floorsFoto: AIDA

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AIDAcosma is 337 meters long and has 20 floorsPhoto: AIDA

Get energetic at the fire station

Peter Pepping, 66, of Rietberg (NRW) has seen it all as a volunteer firefighter. From the Brandenburg bushfire disaster in 1992 to the Elbe Flood in 2002.

However, exclusive tours through AIDAcosma’s huge fire station and view of the Safety Bridge left him speechless.

Peter, who won the trip with his beloved wife Detlinde (64), is excited: “The driving bridge is gigantic. Lots of cameras and modern equipment – every passenger can feel safe here. For me, with this trip, Easter and Christmas fall in one week! “


Talk shop: Peter Bipping (right) with firefighter BernardoFoto: Malte Krudewig

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Photo: Malte Krudewig

The first ship voyage in more than 70 years!

Hildegard (71) and Albert (76) Holzer have been volunteering at St. Joseph’s Parish in Singen (Ba.-Wü.) for decades. Through sponsorship they built a community center and kindergarten in Peru.

The couple did not take the time to go on vacation. Volunteer Pastor: “We were on a cruise for the first time. We couldn’t stand it before.”

Retired Albert: “Our daughter registered us without our knowledge. We are absolutely passionate about the luxury on board and the open minded people from so many countries. Somehow we’ll be back next year!”


Cruise premiere: Hildegard and Albert HolzerFoto: Malte Krudewig

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Cruise premiere: Hildegard and Albert HolzerPhoto: Malte Krudewig

This love story started on AIDA

Hannah Sophie Dressel (29) and Christian Bach (38) from Trier (Rh.-Pf.) met and fell in love on the ship. Last year they got engaged to the kissing mouth ship and are now on an early honeymoon.


On an early honeymoon: Christian Bach and Hannah Sophie DresselFoto: Malte Krudewig

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On an early honeymoon: Christian Bach and Hannah Sophie DresselPhoto: Malte Krudewig

Christian excitedly: “I found the love of my life here, so we continue to ride the wave of happiness here!”


When heroes travel
Photo: BUILD

The wedding date is June 25, 2022. Electrical engineer Christian celebrated his bachelorette party on board – to be safe aboard another ship, the AIDAbella.

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