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CRUISE ADVISER THE ULTIMATE DESTINATION FOR THOSE SELLING CRUISES

HAVANA CLUB

Cuba with Star Clippers

MARCH 2017

FIRST LOOK: SEABOURN ENCORE GREECE DESTINATION FOCUS FAMILY CRUISE SPECIAL WIN! A NIGHT ON MSC MERAVIGLIA IN LE HAVRE


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March 2017 | Forward ED’S LETTER

Now is the time to set sail for Cuba Cuba is undoubtedly the hottest destination in cruise right now. In December, five cruise lines – two from Royal HAVANA Caribbean Cruises CLUB and three from Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings – were given the green light to sail to the Caribbean island from the US, months after Carnival Corporation’s historic voyage with Fathom. The thaw in relations between the countries began during the Obama era and continues now as American tourists start to descend – so now truly is the time to visit. But with all the commotion around these five cruise lines, it’s easy to overlook the fact that other operators have been calling there for a few years now. One is Star Clippers, the tallCRUISE ADVISER THE ULTIMATE DESTINATION FOR THOSE SELLING CRUISES

MARCH 2017

FIRST LOOK: SEABOURN ENCORE GREECE DESTINATION FOCUS FAMILY CRUISE SPECIAL

Cuba with Star Clippers

WIN! A NIGHT ON MSC MERAVIGLIA IN LE HAVRE

ship company that is among the most extraordinary offerings available at sea, and with whom we decided to explore Cuba. You can read Jeannine Williamson’s excellent piece on p28. Elsewhere, we taking a closer look at family cruise. We speak to MSC Cruises’ Steve Williams on p34, check in with Princess Cruises to take in their selling tips on p41, and, on p36, explore why river cruise lines increasingly have families in their sight. Outside of that, Gary Buchanan shares his thoughts on the exquisite Seabourn Encore (p23), plus we declare our love for all things Greek in this month’s Ports of Call (p18). For more, see contents starting p4. Cruise Adviser is here to help you sell more cruises, so your input is truly valued. Please send your comments and suggestions to us at info@cruise-adviser.com. We hope you enjoy reading.



THIS MONTH WHAT WE FOUND OUT IN THIS ISSUE P34

MSC IS GROWING Between now and 2026 MSC Cruises will launch 11 ships – including two (MSC Meraviglia and MSC Seaside) this year

P18

ISLAND HOPPING There are, depending on who you ask, anywhere between 4,000 and 6,000 Greek islands – just 227 of them are inhabited P56

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CHOCOLATE HEAVEN Sachertorte was invented in Vienna by the chef Franz Sacher in 1832. Austrians love it so much there’s even an official Sachertorte Day (December 5, in case you’re wondering)


March 2017| Forward

Singapore, p23

Contents Midship

How to Sell: family cruises

28

InFocus Sam Ballard profiles MSC Cruises as it prepares to take a bigger slice of the UK market with new ships, new staff and new offices

36

River cruise We investigate how river cruise lines are finally following their ocean counterparts and embracing the family cruise

42

Multigenerational Why cruise is the perfect holiday for kids, parents and grandparents. Plus, Princess Cruises shares its selling tips on p40

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March 2017 | Forward

March 2017 | Section Name

FORWARD

3

Ed’s letter Why now is the perfect time to set sail for Cuba

8

News Reports on MSC Cruises’ incredible start to 2017, plus Norwegian Cruise Line’s new ships and Holland America Line’s hook-up with Oprah Winfrey

13

Opinion Patrick Clark, managing director of Avalon Waterways, explains why river cruise has become such big business

18

Ports of call Greece has something for everyone – from idyllic islands to bustling party cities. All tastes, from ancient to modern, are catered for

21

23

Interview AmaWaterways and LGT Golf explain why they have joined forces Seabourn Gary Buchanan reports from Singapore where the ultra-luxury line’s new gamechanging ship Seabourn Encore was christened

27

Choosing Cruising Robbie White explains how his company has grown

28

Cuba Jeannine Williamson sails to Cuba – and into the past – with Star Clippers

AFT 46

New crew The latest staff news

47

Fam trips / incentives The best agent opportunities

48

Jargon buster Mealtimes digested

53

Directory Got a query? Let us assist you

54

Games room Win a cabin for two for one night with MSC Cruises on board MSC Meraviglia

CRUISE-ADVISER.COM

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56

Recipe How to make the classic Austrian chocolate covered dessert, Sachertorte

57

On the road Gemma Ashworth from Carnival Cruise Line on why she hates traffic jams, but loves Rod Stewart

62

Final word cruise adviser comment: Why travel agents are so important in bringing people together following new US President Donald Trump’s controversial travel ban on several Muslim countries

What are your thoughts on the new-look cruise adviser? Share them with us by emailing info@cruise-adviser.com


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NEWS

March 2017 | Forward

Do you have a story for us? Email info@cruise-adviser.com

EXCLUSIVE

MSC Cruises reveals huge increase in year-on-year sales The company has its “best ever January” after seeing a 55 per cent rise in sales in the first month of 2017 following the restructuring of UK sales team MSC Cruises has confirmed that its January sales have increased by 55 per cent year-on-year. Speaking exclusively to Cruise Adviser, MSC’s director of sales Steve Williams said: “The new sales team are almost all in place, we’ve been out for the last three months and have just had our best ever January. The guys are already having a huge impact on the trade just from being out, going to cruise events, being in travel agents doing training. We’ve already, very quickly, seen the benefit of doing that, which is fantastic.” MSC now has a team of six regional managers – including a

presence in Northern Ireland for the first time and a head of retail, Andrea Stafford, who is charged with developing the company’s high street strategy. “When I joined the company in October my main remit was to restructure the sales team to offer the UK trade the same level of service that we already offered the Irish trade, albeit on a bigger scale,” Williams added. It was also revealed that the company’s e-learning tool is currently being overhauled to take into account the 11 ships that it has on order, as well as a module on

MSC Magnifica, its first vessel to homeport in the UK. “We have small pockets of agents who really, really get what we do and sell us in huge numbers,” Williams said. “However, outside of this, there is a lack of awareness about what we are. My job over the next two to three years is to re-educate or educate the trade and tell them how we differ from other cruise lines.” He also stressed how important the trade was to MSC’s growth plans: “My job will be trade. We are 100 per cent trade friendly, almost all of our business comes through the trade and I am totally trade focused.”

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March 2017 | Forward

EDUCATION

Silversea launches new training portal

HOLLAND AMERICA LINE

HAL announces Oprah magazine hook-up Holland America Line has announced a partnership with O, The Oprah Magazine. Oprah Winfrey, the talk show host, and the magazine’s editor at large Gayle King will join the inaugural Share the Adventure Cruise, which will set sail to Alaska this July. There will be four additional Adventure of Your Life sailings throughout 2018. “We are deeply honoured that O, The Oprah Magazine chose Holland America Line as its first cruise line partner to further our shared belief that travel and wellness have the power to open minds, build connections and inspire shared humanity,” said Orlando Ashford, president of Holland America Line.

Silversea Academy includes online training modules, news and exclusive resources Ultra-luxury cruise line Silversea has launched Silversea Academy, an innovative new online training portal for travel agents. The portal, which includes training modules, a news section and exclusive resources, is now live at silverseaacademy.com. Agents are able to complete the Silversea Graduate module and Silver Muse module. According to Silversea, more will soon be released. To celebrate the launch of the Silversea Academy, agents who achieve 100 per cent on the Silver Muse module before March 31, 2017 will be entered into a prize draw to win a cruise on board the new ship. The winner will be among the first to experience Silversea’s flagship, which is due to launch this April. Embarking in Rome on the July 27, 2017, the winning agent will enjoy the ultra-luxury Silversea experience on a 12-day voyage to Venice with return flights included in the prize.

“With our new flagship Silver Muse ready to make her maiden voyage in less than two months and the transition of Silver Cloud to the expedition fleet set for November, the launch of the new Silversea Academy couldn’t come at a better time,” said Connie Georgiou, Silversea’s head of trade sales and partnerships, UK and Ireland. Elsewhere, Silversea has also revamped its travel agent portal MySilversea. The site allows agents to view and manage bookings, review recent marketing material and emails, and access promotional flyers which allow their own contact details to be added. Silver Muse will be seasonally homeported in Fort Lauderdale’s Port Everglades for two years, beginning in October 2017. The 596-guest, all-suite ship is scheduled to sail five itineraries from the US port, beginning October 2017 with a cruise from Florida to Valparaiso, Chile.

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RIVIERA TRAVEL

Travel agents named as godmothers Riviera Travel has named the travel agent godmothers for it two new five-star river cruise ships. Christina Astill from Go Cruise and Tracey Scales from Travel Counsellors were picked as the godmothers of the MS Emily Brontë and MS Thomas Hardy, respectively, following a competition. The pair will be flown to the Netherlands on February 24 for the christenings. Riviera has also announced that it will be running Christmas market cruises for the first time this winter. The five-day itinerary on MS Emily Brontë and MS Thomas Hardy will run between December 1 and 14 and take in Cologne, Frankfurt and Rüdesheim. Prices start at £499 per person and include meals, transfers and travel to port of embarkation.


March 2017 | Forward

NORWEGIAN CRUISE LINE

Four next gen ships on order The vessels will be delivered from 2022 Norwegian Cruise Line has ordered four new 3,300-passenger ships, with the option for two more. The vessels, which will cost about €800 million each, will be delivered in 2022, 2023, 2024 and 2025. If the option is take up, the additional ships will be delivered in 2026 and 2027. The new ships mark a change of policy for Norwegian Cruise Line, with each one holding about 1,000

fewer passengers than the existing Breakaway Plus class. “This new class of ships will continue the Norwegian Cruise Line brand’s legacy of introducing meaningful innovation to the cruise industry,” said Frank Del Rio, president and chief executive officer of Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd. Andy Stuart, president and chief executive officer of Norwegian Cruise

EDUCATION

CUBA

Clia adds a new selling tool to Agent Toolbox

Carnival Cruise Line follows Fathom’s lead

Clia (Cruise Lines International Association) has added a new selling tool to its Agent Toolbox in partnership with Full Picture, a visual conversation tool. The resource will enable agents to send photos, videos and other assets to their customers’ screens in real-time in order to enhance the customer experience. The technology, which is available free of charge and is exclusive to Clia member travel agents, can be found at cruiseexperts.org. Clia said that with the service, calls are proven to convert into bookings 30 per cent more than regular calls and with a sales value of up to 22 per cent higher.

Carnival Cruise Line has received approval to sail to Cuba following the historic launch of cruises from the US to the Caribbean island on Carnival Corporation’s Fathom brand last year. Overnight visits to Havana will be featured on 12 four and five-day cruises on board the line’s 2,052-capacity Carnival Paradise departing from the port of Tampa, Florida starting June 29, 2017 and calling at either Cozumel or Key West en route. “Cuba is an island jewel unique from anywhere else in the Caribbean and we are thrilled to have this rare opportunity to take our guests to this fascinating destination,” said Christine Duffy, president of Carnival Cruise Line. “The opportunity to visit Havana,

Line, added: “For the past 50 years, Norwegian Cruise Line has been focused on offering our guests the very best in cruise. “It is with great excitement that we look ahead to our next 50 years, which includes this next generation of ships that will offer guests the innovative experiences that have come to define the Norwegian Cruise Line brand.”

combined with the fun, relaxed ambience and wide variety of amenities and features offered on Carnival Paradise, will make for a truly one-of-akind vacation experience,” she added. For more information about cruises to the country, see our cover feature, Setting Sail for the Past, on p28.

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March 2017 | Forward

TOM HARPER CRUISES

US tour operator jailed for fraud

Company owner took millions and used it in casinos

The owner of Tom Harper Cruises, a US tour operator, has been jailed for 46 months and ordered to pay $2.9 million for defrauding customers. Bret Gordon took $2.3 million from the company’s bank account and used it in casinos, according to the US Attorney’s Office for the District of Massachusetts. Tom Harper sold river cruises in Europe, Asia and Africa on CroisiEurope vessels and the Zambezi Queen in Botswana. About 400 customers were left without the river cruises they had booked. Gordon had exclusive access to the company’s bank account, according to court documents. Most of the funds were customers’ deposits. Tom Harper Cruises filed for bankruptcy in June 2015. In November 2016 Gordon pleaded guilty to six counts of wire fraud and two counts of filing a false personal tax return. The Boston Globe spoke with two passengers who were in Scotland the night before they were due to board. Mark Binderman said: “Emotions ranged from what I would call a quiet seething rage, where you think someone’s head is going to explode, to grim resignation. “Our tour guide operator broke down in tears. He said he’s never seen anything like this happen before.”

Going overboard... We bring you travel’s more unusual news A homeworker managed to sign off £9,000 worth of business – moments before giving birth. Toni Linney, 27, who runs the franchise Not Just Travel Northwest in Liverpool with her partner Ben Rood, was working on her laptop from beside her hospital bed. The diligent travel agent took worked on quotes for a couple and a family of four to go on holiday to

Dubai, shortly before giving birth to a baby girl. “The work was a distraction from the pain,” Linney joked. “I don’t suppose many people would do it, but I would not have been able to cope in bed all day doing nothing “My laptop goes everywhere with me. We try to respond as quickly as possible and like to get quotes out in half an hour.” Linney eventually gave birth to baby Florence Evelyn Rood after more than 30 hours’ labour.

Win! A cabin for two on MSC Cruises in Le Havre, see p55

See p46 for new hires and p47 for details of fam trips and incentives. Visit cruise-adviser.com for more cruise news, and sign up to the cruise adviser mail out at cruise-adviser. com/subscribe For cruise line listings, see Directory, beginning p49

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2018 RIVER CRUISE PROGR AM ON SALE 4TH MARCH 2017

F

or the 2018 season Riviera Travel will be operating a fleet of 12 five-star and 1 four-star superior ships along the iconic rivers of Europe. Our river cruise program goes from strength to strength with more passengers from the UK now choosing Riviera Travel’s European river cruises than any of our competitors. We are committed to expanding our fleet and our horizons and are delighted to announce the introduction of another brand new five-star ship for 2018, the MS Robert Burns. We will also be taking passengers on a brand new exciting journey from Budapest to the Black Sea.

New for 2018 Brand new ship - The five-star MS Robert Burns Brand new cruise - Amsterdam, Kinderdijk and the Dutch bulbfields - 5 days from just £699pp Brand new cruise - Budapest to the Black Sea, Gems of Eastern Europe - 15 days from just £2,299pp Optional drinks package - Included with lunch and dinner: Draught beer, non-alcoholic beer, soft drinks and juices, red, white and rose house wine and the wine recommendations from the menu 4 nights - £59 7 nights - £99 14 nights - £199

Bulk supplies of our brand new Cruise Compendium brochures will automatically be sent to independent agents w/c 20th March. In addition to our new 2018 River Cruise itineraries they will include for the first time all of our Cruise Collection including Mekong and Ganges River Cruises, Tall Ships N cruises, Ocean cruise and Tour BRO EW CHU and Dalmatian Coast Yacht cruises. R

Com in E Soo g n

For more information on Riviera Travel’s extensive cruising range, contact: agencysales@rivieratravel.co.uk Riviera Travel booking conditions apply. See our website for full terms and conditions. Prices correct as of 15/02/17.


March 2017 | Forward

OPINION

Patrick Clark The managing director of Avalon Waterways explains why river has become such big business It’s no secret that the river industry has undergone a renaissance of late. New competitors have shaken up the market, but the rise of river cruise has mostly been driven by experiences in the ocean cruise market. About 80 per cent of river cruise passengers have previously been on an ocean cruise, that’s the same when it comes to any river cruise company. Ocean passengers have a huge amount of choice – from multiple restaurants to theatres and gambling. We can’t replicate that on the rivers because space is very clearly defined, but it has led to attempts to add amenities to river vessels. You will now see multiple dining venues, an improved quality and selection of meals, more choices for excursions and more entertainment. Ocean cruising has driven that. The difference with river cruise is that we are smaller and offer a more intimate ambience. You step

off and you are immediately in the middle of a small, charming town. It’s all-inclusive whereas with ocean it can all start to add up. The other thing that river cruise lines are doing differently now is seeking ways to differentiate. With Avalon, the way in which we set ourselves apart is with our ship design. We introduced the Panorama Class, which is truly unique. We enlarged our bathroom and changed our beds so that they faced the window – not the wall like on most cruise lines. That means you have this huge panoramic view when you open your eyes in the morning and when you go to sleep at night. We placed a small couch, table and chair by the window so you can enjoy the view while you’re having a cappuccino in the morning. To this day, no one else has incorporated this design. The other thing that is unique to us is the group. We’ve been in the

touring business for 85 years. We’ve got all of this experience on land with hotels, developing itineraries, shore excursions, local guides – what that does is give us a slight advantage compared to firms who just do river cruise. You know when that really helps? When there is an issue. Like a water level problem – you have to wait for the water level to go down. Well, we’ve got all of these hotel contracts, so we are able to put people up at short notice. The ships are like a box. There is a limit to what you can do. People are trying new things – from wine bars to swimming pools – but they are incremental changes. Unless you wanted to completely revolutionise the design and say we’re not going up and down the river at all – and then you would just be creating hotels or casinos. It’s a challenge for a river cruise company.

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March 2017 | Forward

It’s not been an issue so far because the growth has been so dramatic. There are about 23 million ocean cruise passengers and about a third of them have said they are interested in river cruising. There are 600,000 river cruise passengers from English speaking markets, so the upsides are good and the demographics are still baby boomers. When it comes to attracting new to cruise passengers, highlighting the destination is key. The rivers were the original highways of Europe anyway. All of the major ports and cities are along the rivers. Unlike going on a coach tour, you don’t have to keep unpacking, so the convenience factor is also there. There is also the opportunity to meet like-minded travellers. I keep meeting past customers who will say

they’ve met this brilliant couple from Australia, they’re the same age, both have kids who have grown up and now stay in touch. They might not know that before they get on board, but they do know that they don’t want to be taking a cruise with 3,000 other couples and be sitting in a queue of 50 coaches outside Rome. There is definitely a challenge for all of us to reach younger demographics – we all need to attract future cruisers. However, even among baby boomers we have been told that river cruise was too sedentary. That’s why we’ve created more active excursions. It’s a trend we’re seeing across the industry. Travel agents are becoming increasingly important to us. Within the UK we have embarked on an

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effort to engage with the travel agent community more and more. In other markets, 90 per cent of our business comes from agents. It’s not that in the UK but certainly when you look at the efforts being made it is clear that we are pushing for more engagement. It’s a great opportunity to agents. Within the UK we package our products with a home pick-up service when passengers are within 100 miles of the airport. It’s a big thing for a lot of customers. If agents let us package that up for them, our research shows that they love it. The special interest products we sell are increasingly popular, too. It’s a great way for agents to sell a cruise knowing that their client has a particular interest, be it wine or cooking. Sometimes it’s made the difference when it comes to making the booking.


COMING SOON

CHILEAN PATAGONIA Adam Coulter journeys through the stunning Chilean fjords with Australis. Read about his journey to the end of the world, only in next month’s cruise adviser


March 2017 | Forward

PORTS OF CALL

Greece

From thousands of idyllic islands to the party city of Athens, Greece has a lot to offer for cruise customers From the crumbling Acropolis of Athens to the blue-tipped villas of Santorini and the unspoiled beaches of Rhodes, Greece is a destination of enduring appeal. With 6,000 islands in total, scattered across the Aegean and Ionian seas, and divided into groups including the Cyclades, Dodecanese and Sporades, there’s enough to keep you exploring for a lifetime. These islands, which range from Alonnisos (130 sq km) to Crete (8,336 sq km), make up almost half of the country’s near 14,000 km coastline. Greece is thus a sun-worshipper’s paradise, but there’s much more to the country than its beaches: Athens is a fascinating, chaotic but brilliant city where ancient monuments and modern life mix through al fresco dining, art and a lively café culture, while each of the country’s 227 inhabited islands boast charms of their own. “Greece is one of the world’s most beloved destinations, because it provides beautiful yet diverse nature as well as culturally fascinating places,” says Kyriakos ‘Kerry’ Anastassiadis, CEO

of Celestyal Cruises, which is based in Cyprus and specialises in Greek cruises. “We combine Greece’s iconic ‘greatest hits’ such as Athens and Mykonos and Santorini, with idyllic hidden marvels like Milos, with its volcanic landscapes, and evergreen Samos and its azure waters,” says Anastassiadis. “Our medium-size ships allow us to visit destinations that others cannot, while our service and onboard experience is exemplary. The Aegean is our home and our mission is to broaden the portfolio of destinations, increase the diversity of itineraries and give our passengers the unique opportunity to discover these unknown treasures.” While most cruise lines will call at least one Greek port (such as Mykonos or Crete) on an Eastern Mediterranean itinerary, Celestyal dedicates entire cruises to exploring islands, spending a little amount of time in each port, allowing guests to explore more of the region (its Iconic Aegean cruise takes in six ports in just three days, for example).

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March 2017 | Section Name

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March 2017 | Forward Similarly, Variety, which operates far smaller ships than Celestyal (Celestyal Crystal holds 2,000 guests compared to Variety Voyager’s 72), focuses on the islands, most of them outside of the standard tourist trail. Its Jewels of the Cyclades starts and ends in Athens, taking in the likes of Poros, Poliegos, Folegandros and Antiparos among the better known stops of Santorini, Mykonos and Syros. Pick any of these islands – such as Folegandros, with the quaint hilltop village of Chora, or the uninhabited, beguiling Poliegos – and you’re likely to be delighted. Seabourn and Azamara, which operate similarly-sized ships (Azamara Quest holds 686 guests; Seabourn Encore 604), also take a more in-depth look at the islands, calling at some of the better-known destinations, such as Santorini, perhaps the most celebrated of the Greek islands. While best known for its famous villas (and the white church with a blue dome overlooking the sea), the island is of great geological interest. It was destroyed by volcanic eruption in the 16th century BC, which helped create its steep banks and majestic underwater caldera. Many cruise lines offer an excursion to the excavation of Akrotiri, an ancient fishing village discovered under a mountain of volcanic ash. Crete, Greece’s largest island, is one the most popular destinations in the world for British holidaymakers, and is

home to Chania and Heraklion, both of which are called at by well-known cruise lines. From the former is the chance to visit the 4,000-year-old Minoan ruins at Knossos. Piraeus, the port that links to Athens, is unsurprisingly a regular call on both Greek island cruises and itineraries that explore the wider Mediterranean. Like Barcelona, Civitavecchia (Rome) and Venice, it’s a port of call many itineraries begin or end in – be it Princess, Viking or Oceania. Prior to the Olympics in 2004, the city was notoriously difficult to navigate

with a transport system not befitting of a capital. Much of that has now changed and getting to and from the port – as well as to the key sights – is easy. No trip is complete without taking in the Parthenon, Acropolis and Theatre of Dionysos, which is why an overnight here is more important than on the Greek islands. The ancient may grab your attention, but the modern is not to be overlooked. Recession may have hit the country hard, but the capital remains a fun place to be (it’s undoubtedly a party city) with great, wholesome and unpretentious food to boot.

THREE GREEK CRUISES Eight days around the Cyclades

Seven days in the Aegean

20 days around the Mediterranean

Variety Cruises — MS Galileo Athens (round-trip), August 18, 2017 From €1692pp

Celestyal Cruises — Celestyal Nefili Athens (round-trip), June 30, 2017 From €989pp

Seabourn — Seabourn Odyssey Barcelona-Valetta, July 16, 2017 From £5,799pp

This tour of the Cyclades takes in Mykonos, Santorini and Syros as well as the uninhabited Poliegos on board the tiny, 25-cabin MS Galileo.

This voyage takes in ten stops in just seven days, including Syros, Kos and Ios as well as Kusadasi and Cesme in Turkey, plus Mykonos and Santorini.

This epic Mediterranean trip on Carnival’s ultra-luxury line starts in Spain and ends in Malta, taking in six Greek ports as well as France and Italy. CRUISE-ADVISER.COM

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March 2017 | Forward

INTERVIEW

Meandering along the fairway Samuel Ballard sat down with Stuart Perl of AmaWaterways and Nicholas Boekdrukker of LGT Golf to find out more about their new partnership When AmaWaterways announced its partnership with LGT Golf, few were surprised. The deal will see golf fanatics offered the chance to play on five European Tour class golf courses while taking a Danube cruise between Prague and Budapest. The courses (the Albatross, in the Czech Republic; Hartl, in Germany; Diamond, in Austria; Penati, in Slovakia; and the Pannonia in Hungary) are a dream for golf lovers. Plus any partners who don’t want to hit the fairways can stay on board and enjoy the ship. Available on any seven-night sailing between April and October, the product is also fully commissionable to agents. We sat down with Nicholas Boekdrukker, the managing director of LGT Golf, and Stuart Perl of AmaWaterways, to find out more. cruise adviser: How did LGT Golf come about? Nicholas Boekdrukker: It developed as a result of me playing golf all around the world. I previously worked in the travel industry for ten years and I always wanted to go into business for myself and create a product that was unique, luxurious but affordable, and certainly not mainstream. In England you are spoilt for choice when it comes to quality golf courses. The rest of the world isn’t so lucky. People do go to other destinations – be it Thailand or Spain – and they will play one or two golf courses. If they are adventurous they will take a 10-minute cab and play another one. I started thinking about how I could connect up all of the great courses across Belgium, Germany and the Czech Republic and that’s how I met Stuart. Why was AmaWaterways interested in the partnership? Stuart Perl: We are delighted to offer golf holidays on board our ships. They’ve been done before on ocean ships and they’ve not necessarily taken

off, but with river it is a completely new proposition. It makes far more sense. What is LGT offering? Nicholas: We have five European Tour class courses along the Danube. We pick our guests up in the morning from the AmaWaterways ship in a luxury Mercedes van and take them to one of these incredible courses. They then play golf, have lunch at the course while our staff clean their clubs and put them back in the van so they don’t have to do anything. Their practice balls will have been set up. Everything will be taken care of. They will come back to the ship in the early afternoon and be able to spend the rest of the day with their partner. They can then enjoy a glass of champagne on deck and everything there is to do on AmaWaterways as the ship meanders down to the next golf course where the same driver is there waiting for them. So you are taking the difficulty out of it for the golfer? Nicholas: Exactly. It’s the access and local knowledge that we have. It would be a logistical nightmare to try and

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do what we are doing on your own. That’s the beauty of this product. This is a chance to play European Tour golf courses. These aren’t just fivestar courses – they are the same ones that the European Tour selects for its championships. It’s not The Open, I appreciate that, but the course we play in Germany is the Porsche Open. What do customers get for the price of the ticket? Nicholas: Transportation to and from the golf courses, a welcome packet (with golf balls, club cleaning brush, pitch repair tool), green fees, practice balls, the use of a pull trolley, lunch at the club house with alcohol (within reason) as well as their cruise of course. How can the trade get involved with selling this product? Stuart: It’s being communicated to the trade via our agency sales reps and there are brochures available online. We understand that it’s not going to be a core product, but this is for the really serious golfer. They could do a holiday for £499, but this is the luxury option, with us taking care of all of the logistics.


March 2017 | Forward What advice would you have for travel agents selling this? Nicholas: This is the perfect opportunity for the trade or homeworkers to harness any relationships they have with golf clubs where they can hold events to really push this. The beauty is that, not only is it unique to AmaWaterways, but it is a unique product to the entire river cruise industry. That gives them access to a completely new market: the golfer. Agents can now approach them and say you may not have ever thought about taking a cruise, but if I can give you access to five European Tour golf courses, on a luxury holiday and you can take your partner who might not be interested in golf. It’s a win for everyone. Why is this better than a golfer trying to do it themselves? Nicholas: It’s five of the best courses in Europe and one luxury floating hotel with gourmet restaurants and chefs’ tables and all of the other experiences you can have on board. With little old LGT picking them up and taking them back. It’s the best of all possibilities. Are you looking at any other potential itineraries? Nicholas: Yes we are – Amsterdam to Basel and Amsterdam to Budapest. The latter will be in 2018 and would be an insanely intensive golf holiday with anything between eight and ten golf courses.

THREE GOLF CRUISES Ten nights in the Arabian Gulf

11 days on the Danube

12 days in the Mediterranean

Azamara Club Cruises – Azamara Journey Dubai (round-trip), November 14, 2017 From $2,875pp

AmaWaterways – AmaCerto Prague-Budapest, June 2, 2017 Fare from £2,898pp, golf £1,845pp

SeaDream Yacht Club – SeaDream II Cannes-Civitavecchia (Rome), May 29, 2017 See website for details

Azamara has partnered with PerryGolf to offer golf cruises. This departure covers five rounds of golf in the Gulf.

This European golf tour calls at five courses. Guests will have the chance to play on some of the continent’s best fairways with LGT Golf.

Taking in six of the Med’s best courses with SeaDream’s golf partner PerryGolf, from Monte Carlo to Sardinia. CRUISE-ADVISER.COM

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March 2017 | Forward

SEABOURN

“Seabourn Encore is a milestone in the evolution of cruise” Gary Buchanan travelled to Singapore to witness the christening of the Carnivalowned brand’s latest ship that is set to launch a new era of ultra-luxury cruise The latest addition to the ultra-deluxe, all-inclusive Seabourn Cruise Line fleet was christened in Singapore in early January. During the inauguration ceremony, Arnold Donald, president and chief executive officer of Carnival Corporation said: “Seabourn Encore is a milestone in the evolution of cruise.” To the audience of more than 1,000 Seabourn passengers, local dignitaries and cruise media gathered in the Marina Bay Cruise Centre, the eloquent Carnival Group chief explained: “There’s a romance and excitement to cruising that you have to experience to understand. Our crew is unequalled in their ability to inspire a next generation of cruisers.” Singapore’s minister of trade and Industry, Mr Iswaran highlighted the “significant and growing role” that Carnival brands play in the region’s cruise business, noting that they account for 20 per cent of all cruise arrivals in

Singapore – Seabourn Sojourn was also in port for the occasion. “Vast itinerary possibilities, excellent airlift and a favourable climate are all conducive to cruise flourishing here,” he said. After the Godmother, soprano Sarah Brightman, activated a lever that smashed the nebuchadnezzar of Nicolas Feuillatte champagne onto the side of the hull, Cruise AdvisEr caught up with Seabourn president, Rick Meadows. “We have been looking forward to this day for over two years,” he proudly boasts. “Seabourn Encore is our fourth ultra-luxury vessel and marks a major step forward in terms of growth for the company. This ship is beautiful and I know guests are going to be absolutely captivated as they step on board and see it first hand. Guests will be equally impressed with the Seabourn Ovation which launches in spring 2018 and will spend its first summer in Europe.”

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The design of the Italian-built ship was undertaken by Adam Tihany, a noted New York-based designer who has created a clutch of the world’s most celebrated contemporary restaurants and hotels. However, this was the first time the design guru had been commissioned to create the entire interior of an ultra-deluxe cruise ship. Tihany boasts that he envisaged something “a bit sexier” than the Odyssey-class ships. He told Cruise Adviser: “I watched how guests and crew interacted with the Odyssey-class ships. I was adamant that my vision of a Seabourn ship would be more fluid and sleek. To achieve this I swapped the Nordic-style elements for a more curvaceous and sinuous realisation of a luxurious Italian yacht.” There’s also a different colour palette across all ten passenger decks. Out are the cool ash wood and honey-coloured


March 2017 | Forward tones, replaced with darker hues of blues, browns and whites as well as mahogany accents that help to enhance the nautical feel. The 300 spacious veranda suites come in 12 categories, ranging in size from 251 to 1,306 sq ft and include Penthouse Spa Suites; Signature Suites and Wintergarden Suites. There are seven lounges and bars including The Club and Observation Bar. In addition to the elegantly appointed Restaurant, The Grill by Thomas Keller, that made its debut on Seabourn Quest last year, showcases the culinary prowess of the Michelin-starred chef. There’s also the on trend Sushi where specialist chefs prepare sashimi, nigiri and sushi – a first for Seabourn. Another new facet is The Retreat – a top-deck eyrie ringed with 16 private cabanas. Seabourn Square – the social hub of every ship in the fleet – has been perfectly re-imagined by Tihany. With its living-room ambience, this concierge lounge now also boasts a library, boutiques, coffee bar and outdoor terrace. On the entertainment front, a new production show An Evening with Tim Rice tops the bill in the Grand Salon, which is the venue for revue-style shows, cabaret performances and virtuoso singers. The lavish Spa at Seabourn maintains the company’s emphasis on well-being. Seabourn Encore will arrive in the Mediterranean in May and then undertake a series of varying duration cruises until late September when the ship will head to the Arabian Gulf before setting the compass to India, the Far East and Australia. Lynn Narraway, Seabourn’s managing director for UK and Ireland, was also in Singapore for the christening. Cruise Adviser took the opportunity to ask her why agents should sell Seabourn as opposed to other luxury lines. She explained: “Our overall objective is to grow the luxury cruise sector, not by taking guests from other cruise lines but by attracting more luxury travellers to the concept of taking a cruise with Seabourn through our incredible service, culinary, lifestyle and destination experiences.” CRUISE-ADVISER.COM

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March 2017 | Section Name THREE CRUISES THAT CALL AT SINGAPORE 16 days across Asia

Seabourn – Seabourn Encore Dubai-Singapore, October 25, 2017 From £5,999pp This incredible cruise takes in the United Arab Emirates, Oman, India (Mumbai, Mangalore and Chochin) and Sri Lanka before arriving in Singapore. The following cruise (from £12,585pp) heads from there to Sydney.

38 days from the UK

Princess Crusies – Sapphire Princess Southampton-Singapore, October 21, 2018 From £3,518pp This special cruise gives guests the opportunity to cruise from the UK all the way to Singapore – calling at 17 ports over 38 days. The (slightly different) return is from £3,178pp.

Four nights to Thailand

Royal Caribbean – Mariner of the Seas Singapore (round-trip), March 5, 2018 From £466pp Departing from and returning to Singapore, this mini-cruise on Royal Caribbean takes in Port Klang (Malaysia) and Phuket (Thailand). Upgrade to a balcony room for an extra £200pp.

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March 2017 | Forward

COMING SOON

First look: Saga’s new ship Saga has released artist’s impressions of its first purpose-built cruise ship, which is due to be launched in summer 2019

Saga has released images of its forthcoming purpose-built ship, due in 2019. Carrying fewer than 1,000 passengers, the as yet unnamed vessel will benefit from single-sitting dining with numerous speciality restaurants, both indoor and outdoor pools, a spa and a selection of bars. Every cabin will also have a balcony, while 15 per cent of rooms will be for solo travellers. The double-tiered dining room and vast central atrium give the ship

a sophisticated look in what is an exciting move for the company. SMC, the agency responsible for Viking’s much-heralded class of ocean ships, is pioneering the design. David Pickett, Saga’s new build director, said: “A huge amount of thought and detail has gone into the design and construction. We’ve just finalised the sizes of the restaurants and the theatre. The designs of the stunning balcony cabins are also

being finalised. The whole ship certainly has the ‘wow’ factor.” Andy Yuill, managing director of SMC, added: “I think people are going to be surprised by what Saga will deliver with this ship – expect the unexpected! We are maintaining the best bits of the existing brand, but introducing new and unexpected elements. It’s a ship built for a British company, with the customers at the forefront.” CRUISE-ADVISER.COM

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March 2017 | Forward

The regeneration of choice Robbie White of Choosing Cruising explains how his family-run company has grown and developed new products to reflect the ever-changing cruise industry Who are Choosing Cruising? We are an independent business providing comprehensive details on cruise operators, offers, ships, itineraries and ports. We were founded in 2001, when there were few cruise databases available on the web and since then we have established a unique position and reputation within the cruise market. What is your USP? We display more cruises than any other website, with over 140 cruise lines, 1,000 offers, 5,000 ports and 30,000 cruises – all of which are easy to find using our plethora of site navigation options. Our content is perfect for e-shots and online marketing campaigns as our itineraries all have a unique URL that can be linked to and sent to customers. We are a family-run business and our levels of customer support and service are something that we are proud of – we have worked with many of our clients for over 15 years.

How can it help the trade? I have been told that Choosing Cruising is known by travel agents as “the oracle of cruise information” and we are enormously proud and humbled when we meet industry colleagues who say they could not operate without our website. We have been extremely busy over the last year improving our layouts, travel agent content and our relationships with cruise line partners, to continue to provide the fastest cruise search on the web. We have brand new search filters, price breakdowns and each client can now choose what sort of pricing is displayed on their own website. We are also delighted to power the Cruise Search and Ship Finder products on the Clia Members Hub. What trends have you noticed over the last year? I have been really impressed with the number of river cruise enquiries this year. We have seen a dramatic increase

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in interest for cruises on every river we display and I can understand why, given the ever-improving ships and products on offer. Statistics on our websites show more demand for smaller, niche products than ever before and we have added options under our ‘Speciality’ cruise section because of this. There is a cruise product out there for all customers and we show every type of cruise – the way we’ve built our database enables us to drill-down by date, no-fly, ocean, river, seasonal, speciality, port, destination and theme to find exactly the right cruise to suit the holidaymaker. What’s next for Choosing Cruising? A lot of our development is based on clients speaking to us about what would be helpful for their customers and we then implement this, where possible, on all our Choosing Cruising websites. Now we’ve created something completely new. With so many innovative things happening on board, cruise lines and travel agents want to show them off to customers so they make the choice that’s right for them – so, we have designed a product called Expert Cruise Finder. This new-look website combines Choosing Cruising’s existing cruise database with a huge number of additional images, videos, itinerary maps, deck plans, cabin descriptions and destination information. The product has already been integrated into many UK travel agent websites and it can also be provided as an API for agents who want to create their own unique cruise system. I look forward to working with more agents and cruise lines over the next year and I hope we can help boost their sales through our range of products.


March 2017 | Section Name

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CUBA

Setting sail for the past Jeannine Williamson heads for Havana on board Star Clippers’ four-mast ship Star Flyer for a Caribbean cruise with a difference

SELLING TIP Marriage blessings are conducted by the ship’s captain with uniformed crew in attendance – a romantic recommendation for newlyweds and honeymooners


March 2017 | Forward I am standing on the crow’s nest high above the wooden deck and releasing my inner Captain Jack Sparrow. Ahead, the sparkling waters of the Caribbean stretch as far as the eye can see, and behind me 16 cream sails propel the ship further away from Havana and onwards to our next Cuban destination. It might not be the Black Pearl, but Star Flyer could easily be straight out of a film set and it’s a world away from the image that automatically springs to mind at the mention of cruise ships. There’s no rock climbing wall, Broadway-style entertainment, casino or multiple dining venues. Instead, the various activities, such as climbing the mast, are totally in keeping with this modern-day recreation of a clipper; the sleek vessels with lofty canvas sails that ruled the waves as the world’s fastest oceangoing vessels in the mid-19th century. Cuba is fascinating, and totally unlike anywhere else in the Caribbean. Sultry, pastel coloured colonial Spanish cities are filled with cigar sellers, salsa beats and growling American cars from the 1950s, a living legacy of the trade embargo that severed US imports after the late communist leader Fidel Castro came to power. However, shortcomings include a lack of good quality hotels and service standards on a level with other Caribbean islands, along with things often running to flexible local time – if at all. All of this makes a cruise a hasslefree way to experience Cuba. Following the relaxation of travel arrangements for American citizens, the floodgates have opened with a number of US-owned cruise lines now setting sail to Havana. But for a really authentic experience that’s a perfect fit in a country where the clock often stands still, Star Clippers really fits the bill. We boarded Star Flyer in Havana for an 11-night sailing around Cuba and to other Caribbean destinations. Launched in 1991, the ship was the realisation of a childhood dream for Swedish entrepreneur Mikael Krafft. The 170-passenger, four-masted vessel – technically a square-rigged barquentine for those in the nautical know – was later joined by sister ship Star Clipper and the 227-passenger Royal Clipper. A fourth ship, the 300-passenger Flying Clipper, is scheduled to launch next year.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

A former newspaper journalist, Jeannine is now an awardwinning travel writer and cruise specialist contributing to trade and consumer magazines, newspapers and websites. Her worldwide travels range from paddling a canoe along the Mississippi to sailing in the world’s largest ships.

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March 2017 | Forward

SELLING

TIP

For client and a real s that enjoy fresh air fe suggest ca eling of being at se bins that open dire a, onto the ctly deck

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Star Flyer might have been dwarfed by the huge cruise ship moored alongside, but the first glimpse made a big impression with the elegant sweep of its hull, masts topped by twinkling lights and a welcome cocktail and nibbles in the teak-decked al fresco Tropical Bar. From the maritime knots that form patterns in the carpet to nostalgic seafaring paintings and a wealth of polished brass and varnished wood, the ship’s interior has a lovely retro feel. This extended to our cosy cabin with its round porthole. A total of 79 of the 85 cabins are outside facing and they range in size from 97 sq ft, for the inside cabins, to the 226 sq ft owner’s stateroom. There are seven cabin grades and all feature bathrooms with a shower, ample storage, TV, DVD player, hairdryer and safe. Extras in category one cabins include a mini-bar and bath. After settling in, it was time for our first meal in the restaurant which serves buffet breakfast and lunch, with live cooking stations, and a waiter-served evening meal. A bell heralded the start of mealtimes and – synchronised exactly with the first peal – the onboard musician Jerry struck up on the white grand in the namesake Piano Bar, wishing everyone a cheery “bon appetit” as they went downstairs. Although there’s a generous time slot for meals, we ended up like Pavlov’s proverbial dogs as it was hard to resist the call of the culinary bell. To whet appetites further, sample dishes are set out next to the menu in the Piano Bar prior to dinner so you can decide what to choose. We spent our first day in Havana, where the cruise terminal is conveniently situated in the old city. If you decide not to take the optional excursion it’s easy to get around on your own. The vintage cars are everywhere, from spluttering taxis to gleaming models in a kaleidoscope of colours which are used for tourist tours of an hour or more. We can’t resist a bright pink 1950 open-top Cadillac and set off on a tour of the city’s highlights, which include enormous Revolution Square where Castro addressed more than one million supporters. Afterwards we stroll around narrow streets that are refreshingly free from famous name fast food chains and coffee shops, stopping


March 2017 | Forward for an inexpensive mojito and to listen to a live band that has people dancing in the street at 11am. That night brought the spectacle of our first sailaway, with 36,000 square feet of sails unfurling to the rousing sound of the 1492: Conquest of Paradise theme by Vangelis. It’s a real goose-bump moment. Although motorised, Star Flyer sails by wind power wherever possible and that was around 70 per cent on our cruise. The focus is firmly on the Star Clipper experience, rather than the man-made attractions you find on large cruise ships. All free onboard activities complement this philosophy, from the mast climbing to lying out on the bowsprit nets, watersports, stargazing sessions, talks by the captain and low-key entertainment, such as quizzes and nightly music. The social hub is the Tropical Bar where passengers – around 60 per cent repeaters – gather to swap seafaring tales over the cocktail of the day, enjoy generous complimentary pre-dinner snacks and mingle with crew and off-duty officers, the latter a pleasant surprise for anyone used to the ‘upstairs-downstairs’ hierarchy on large ships. There is also an open bridge policy and you’re welcome to drop by and chat to the captain and officers at any time, except when Star Flyer is manoeuvring in and

5 REASONS TO SELL STAR CLIPPERS 1. Authentic sailing experience 2. Will appeal to clients who don’t like to do mainstream cruises and also repeat cruisers looking for something new 3. No fixed demographic 4. Able to visit smaller ports larger vessels can’t reach 5. Laid-back, friendly atmosphere with no formal dress code

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March 2017 | Forward out of port. Even during these times, the captain often provides a brief explanation about what’s going on. There are many shore highlights, including a stop at upmarket Grand Cayman where we take the excursion to Stingray City. In Jamaica we quickly fall into the famously laid-back lifestyle by taking a lazy raft trip along a tranquil river lined by lush forest outside Montego Bay. Back in Cuban waters, Star Flyer’s tenders ferry passengers back and forth to islands with pristine powder sand beaches, such as Cayo Largo with its turtle sanctuary, and Cayo Rico where the crew cook up a fantastic beach barbecue. Our planned stop on Isla de la Juventud, with a national park and dive sites, is scuppered by the vagaries of the Cuban authorities. By way of an apology, the captain throws an impromptu cocktail party and everyone is happy. Whatever the many delights on dry land – and Cuba is a captivating destination – this is a cruise where the joint star of the show is the ship. One day, with no sight of land, we’re offered the chance to go out in the tender to photograph Star Flyer under full sail. It’s yet another wow factor moment on this amazing cruise with a difference. Star Clippers’ Cuba itineraries range from seven to 11 nights (prices from £1,705pp). For more information see directory, p53

THREE MORE CRUISES TO CUBA 71 nights from the UK

Seven nights from Havana

Five nights from Miami

Fred Olsen – Black Watch Southampton-Malaysia, January 5, 2018 From £8,199pp

MSC Cruises – MSC Opera Havana (round-trip), February 3, 2018 From £499pp

Royal Caribbean – Empress of the Seas Miami (round-trip), April 19, 2017 From £1,125pp

This epic cruise leaves from the south coast and takes in pretty much everywhere – including an overnight in Havana. It works out at £115 per night.

MSC has two ships homeported in Cuba. This cruise includes two nights in Havana before taking guests to the Cayman Islands, Jamaica and back.

Fathom’s historic voyage from the US to Havana has paved the way for other lines. This inaugural sailing for Royal Caribbean will be a special moment.

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March 2017 | Midship

INFOCUS

MSC Cruises Sam Ballard profiles the company as it prepares to take a bigger slice of the UK cruise market with new ships, new staff and a new, more anglicised outlook “In 2002, when we started the business, we were carrying 80,000 passengers a year,” explains Antonio Paradiso, managing director of MSC in the UK and Ireland. “Today we are hosting 80,000 passengers a week. By 2026 we will have 120,000 passengers a day.” The incredible speed of MSC’s expansion has been nothing short of breathtaking. The company currently has 11 ships on order, an investment that runs into many billions of euros. “We went from an Italian company to a Mediterranean company and we are now a global player. MSC is currently the biggest cruise line in Europe, South America and South Africa,” he adds. “With 11 more ships coming, if we’re supposed to go from 1.8 million

passengers per year to five million by 2026 we should focus on the countries where we see huge potential.” For MSC that growth plan means targeting the world’s most established cruise markets – the UK, USA and Australia where, in previous years, the company hasn’t made as much of an impact as it has done in Italy, France and Spain. Having taken over the UK brief in 2016, Paradiso has already overseen the company’s move to new premises close to Heathrow and hired Steve Williams as director of sales. Williams, who was with Royal Caribbean for ten years, is the one challenged with increasing trade engagement and ultimately sales.

“I have put in a team of six regional sales managers and a head of retail, who they all report into, and who is responsible for developing our high street strategy where we really see some big opportunities – through the multiples and the consortia,” Williams explains. “We’ve been out for the past three months and we have had our best ever January. We are 55 per cent up in the UK and Ireland. So, already, the team are having a huge effect on the trade, just being at cruise events, being at travel agencies and doing training. We’ve very quickly seen the benefit. “My job over the next two to three years is to educate and re-educate the trade. To tell them that we can offer

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MarchMarch 2017 2017 | Section | Midship Name them something new, exciting and fresh – be that through existing ships and itineraries or new ones.” When it comes to new hardware, no one has a tougher job than MSC. With Meraviglia launching in June and Seaside launching in December. The process of education is going to be continual one. Training platforms have been taken offline while they are given a spruce up by the global head office. “The new ships that we have coming up are revolutionary,” Williams adds. “Meraviglia is a game-changer. Seaside is going to change the whole industry. With so many new ships now you don’t even know you’re at sea. Seaside turns that entirely on its head. The restaurants and bars are down low with big wraparound decks, it’s al fresco. We have lawn balconies. We are really changing what cruising is about.” The company is also putting its money where its mouth is in terms of UK deployment. Next year Magnifica will be based in Southampton from April until the end of October. The ship will retain its Mediterranean influence but “20 per cent” will be anglicised – from kettles in the staterooms to draft lagers in the bars. English will be the first language on board, too. “You can see things are changing because we are starting to use English names,” says Paradiso. “We now need to change people’s perceptions.”

THREE MSC CRUISES Seven nights in Europe

Seven nights in Europe

21 days across the Atlantic

Magnifica Southampton (round-trip), April 2, 2018 From £699pp

Preziosa Southampton (round-trip), September 6, 2017 From £649pp

Seaside Venice-Miami, December 1, 2017 From £1,209pp

Join MSC Magnifica as it embarks on its first ever ex-UK season. The voyage marks a seachange for MSC as it aims to take a bigger slice of the British market. The cruise calls at France, Belgium, the Netherlands and Germany.

MSC’s current flagship, Preziosa, will be in Southampton in September for a series of cruises to Northern Europe – giving British customers the chance to see the best of what the line has to offer.

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Seaside is the ship that MSC says will change the cruise industry. This 21-day trip leaves Italy and heads across the Atlantic to Puerto Rico. An impressive price for such a long cruise – especially on its maiden voyage.


March 2017 | Section Name

RIVER CRUISE

Family fortunes Anthony Pearce reports on the river cruise lines who are finally following their ocean counterparts and embracing the next generation of customers

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March 2017 | Midship From white-knuckle water-slides to bigbudget theatre productions, Xbox-lined games rooms and top-notch kids’ clubs, the modern cruise ship has redefined the family holiday. These floating theme parks, with dozens of dining venues and spacious cabins, are built with children of six months too teenagers in mind, with plenty for mum and dad to do, too. The same cannot be said for ships found on the river. With low bridges, shallow waters and narrow locks dictating their size and design, these vessels are a far-cry from the likes of Anthem of the Seas and Carnival Vista. There’s not a robotic bartender in sight on the Rhine. This may be part of the reason why the river cruise industry has failed to pick up the family as quickly as its ocean cousins. It’s also the reason why it has failed to shake off its image of being exclusively an old person’s holiday the way ocean cruise has. It’s true that a restless teenager who may have adored the activities and entertainment on the latest mega-ship may find river cruise a culture shock, but its benefits are clear – regardless of age. With more included than on many ocean-going ships, river cruises are also faster-paced (despite their reputation as being a holiday for the infirm), with less time waiting for tenders or relying on coaches (and often expensive shore excursions) and more time exploring the cultural highlights of the likes of Amsterdam or Vienna. For children – particularly teenagers – who are budding explorers, keen to learn more about the world and experience it for themselves, it actually makes a lot of sense. And with no sea days, there’s less chance for kids to complain that they’re bored. Given the history of the towns and cities that line Europe’s waterways, a river cruise promises to be educational as well as entertaining. The informal atmosphere on board and the smaller ships may also suit families who would prefer to spend a relaxing holiday together, rather than at each end of a 350m long ship. And it makes sense for the cruise lines, too. “It’s important in the river cruise market to think about our next generation,” says Kristin Karst, CRUISE-ADVISER.COM

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March 2017 | Midship

co-founder of AmaWaterways, one of the first river lines to embrace the family cruise. “We will welcome AmaChristina in 2017 and AmaLea in 2018, both of which are sister ships to the AmaViola and the AmaStella, the two ships we welcomed this year. They are the first of our ships with a set of connecting doors, and a cabin with a third bed. The suites are even able to accommodate four guests, which is great for families.” The ships have 12 staterooms that can sleep up to three family members, and six sets of adjoining cabins that can be connected by an internal doorway to accommodate families of up to five, plus four suites have convertible sofa-beds that can be used for families of up to four – all

ideas ocean cruise embraced a long time ago. As Karst points out, it’s also great for multi-generational cruise (see p42). The line has also entered into partnership with Adventures by Disney, which promises immersive adventures for families, although these holidays are not currently available to UK travel agents. Another line that has embraced family cruises is Uniworld, voted by Travel + Leisure readers as number one in the World’s Best River Cruising for Families category for four years in a row. The line has added sailings such as an eight-day Paris and Normandy cruise, an eight-day Basel to Amsterdam itineraries and a tenday Budapest to Prague trip.

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It’s not just about inviting kids on board, but keeping them happy once they are there. The ultra-luxury line provides kid-friendly menus and invites children to join cooking classes – baking strudels or mini-pizzas – as well as a chance to go foraging for mussels. On select itineraries and departures, children aged between four and 18 cruise for half price. Kathryn Beadle, managing director of Uniworld UK, says that river cruises, with their regular stops, are not only a great way to introduce youngsters to the delights of travel, but also to provide a unique educational experience. “A river cruise is a great way to give younger generations an insight into different cultures as they travel to new cities, quaint villages and traditional towns on a truly memorable holiday,” says Beadle. “All age groups can enjoy the leisurely pace of a Uniworld river cruise and enjoy the variety of onboard entertainment and onshore excursions which have been specially designed with families in mind.” Tauck, the American tour operator and river cruise line, offers family itineraries that it promises have “just the right balance of shared activities, downtime, culturally immersive experiences and sheer family fun”. This year, Tauck will launch a new family river cruise in France. The eight-day Family Fun Along the Seine trip includes a full-day excursion to Normandy’s D-Day Beaches and a guided visit to artist Claude Monet’s house and gardens in Giverny. It is Tauck’s fourth river cruise designed specifically for families. One river cruise line that is particularly impressive for families is A-Rosa, which generously lets children under 15 cruise for free (one per paying adult) on all its itineraries, across all dates. The line has five international ships from a fleet of 11. With most river lines still only operating limited family-friendly itineraries, there is clearly a long way to go. But, a step in the right direction has been made over the last few years, and offerings such as the above could soon become the rule, rather than the exception.


March 2017 | Section Name

TOP TIPS FOR FAMILIES GOING ON A CRUISE 1. Pack swimwear in the hand luggage, so as soon as you are on board the ship the children can go to the swimming pool, rather than having to wait an hour or so for their luggage to be delivered to the cabin. 2. When watching an evening theatre show, get to the theatre early to make sure that you have the seats you want. 3. Book your holiday early as the availability of cruises in the school holidays goes quickly. Booking early also means you can secure your preferred cabin. CRUISE-ADVISER.COM

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March 2017 | Midship

FAMILY CRUISE

How to sell to first-time families Princess Cruises’ sales manager Karen Farndell reveals how to tempt new to cruise customers “When a customer is thinking about booking a standard package holiday, for example flights and an all-inclusive hotel in Spain, compare the option to what they will receive if they book a cruise,” explains Karen Farndell, sales manager for Princess Cruises. “Break down both holiday options and show what is included in each. Comparing the two options is a great and easy way to demonstrate the value for money cruises offer.” Farndell, and the rest of the Princess Cruises team, are in the middle of a major push on the British travel trade. The reason? The company has recently announced that 2018 is going to be its biggest year yet for ex-UK departures. Interestingly, the company sees families as one of the key areas for growth within the area. And it is agents who are going to help them deliver. “Cruises offer even more value for money when you sail from the UK as it excludes flight costs,” she says. “When selling a cruise to families, especially those who have never cruised before,

recommend that they book on a cruise that sails roundtrip from Southampton. That way there will be no stress with going to or from the airport. Within an hour of arriving at the cruise terminal, the family can start their holiday. “Agents should also involve children in the booking process. Getting the children excited about going on a cruise will in turn make the parents want to book the holiday. Tell them about the children’s centres and the fun activities and games that they can take part in, as well as showing them images so they can get a better idea. Once the family has booked onto a cruise, they can see what activities will be offered each day through their Cruise Personaliser, so the children can choose what they would like to do before they even step on board.” The company, which offers everything from Movies under the Stars (with complimentary popcorn, cookies and milk) to dance classes, also recently announced that it would be redesigning its onboard children’s

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clubs. The fleet-wide programme will see Princess introduce The Treehouse (three to seven-year-olds), The Lodge (eight-12) and the Beach House (1317) as well as changing the name of its youth programme to Camp Discover. For Farndell – who has cruised with her own family to the Caribbean, Mediterranean, Northern Europe, the Baltics and the Canaries – a cruise is clearly a no-brainer. “Focus on ship features that both parents and children can enjoy together,” she advises. “My son is 11 and food is one of his favourite things about a cruise. He loves trying new things and so will always order the most unusual thing on the menu! “If agents want to become more knowledgeable about what Princess Cruises can offer for families they can do so by completing the Princess academy modules on onesource.com,” Farndell adds. “This will help you get a much greater understanding of the brand and learn more about the destinations that Princess visits.”


March 2017 | Midship

MULTIGEN

Something for everyone Why cruise is the perfect holiday solution for families looking to go away with the kids and the grandparents but still keep all ages amused A customer wants a holiday: this summer, with the wife, the kids, and gran and granddad are coming, too. They want good food, great weather and a bit of culture to go with it. The entertainment needs to be top-notch – the teenager is restless, to say the least – but safety, especially with their young one, is paramount. If you’re not screaming the word ‘cruise’ by now, you should be. In recent years, the family holiday has been reinvented by ambitious cruise lines, which have taken everything you might want from a package holiday, built on it, and put it on a moving hotel. With these state-ofthe-art ships boasting West End-style

WHAT IS MULTIGEN?

‘Multigenerational’ cruise has become one of the industry’s most commonly heard buzzwords. In short, cruises are increasingly being marketed as the perfect holiday for grandparents, parents and children. It’s the latter two groups that have come around to cruise.

shows, waterslides, dodgems and dozens of dining venues, it’s no surprise that youngsters, for the first time, have embraced the cruise. But it’s not just the kids – it’s the parents and the parents’ parents who have fallen in love with a holiday once reserved for the old. The fact that large ships offer a whole range of different holidays, depending on what you’re after, have led to the rise in multigenerational cruises, which allow the perfect amount of quality family time with the space to breathe and do your own thing, too. “Our holidays offer a whole host of onboard activities and excursions to be enjoyed by the whole family,” says Adam Sharp, head of key accounts at Royal Caribbean International. “Thrill-seekers of all ages can enjoy amazing onboard features from our FlowRider surf simulator to the Ultimate Abyss slide and my personal favourite, the RipCord by iFLY skydiving simulator. For those wanting to relax, grown-ups can enjoy our Vitality Spa while the kids are kept entertained by the onboard Adventure Ocean programme, which has a number of programmes for all ages, developed alongside partners including DreamWorks.” “Off the ship there are also plenty of shore excursions for all ages. Adults can embark on trips such as our Tuscany art of wine-making excursion or families can choose excursions like our Gladiator for a day experience in Rome – there really is something for everyone.” Turn over for five reasons why cruise is perfect for the whole family.

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March 2017 | Midship

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March 2017 | Midship The onboard entertainment has dramatically improved. Once ‘cruise ship entertainment’ was a catch-all phrase to describe any stage show that was, well, a bit naff. But in recent years, as cruise lines attempt to outdo each other by attracting the biggest and best-known shows, things have changed. From Grease (Royal Caribbean) to Rock of Ages (Norwegian Cruise Line) and Disney Dreams (Disney Cruise Line), there’s now top-notch entertainment on board that all the family can enjoy. Many of the largest cruise lines also have separate kids’ entertainment and adults-only comedy (on Carnival Cruise Line, for example). Even the most fussy young eaters will be catered for. On some of the larger ships, it’s not uncommon to see ten or more dining venues, and even the main dining room menu will cater for most tastes, and have extensive kid-friendly menus. These large spaces offer the chance to sit together, even if you’re in a family group of six or seven. Increasingly, fast-food venues are springing up on cruise ships, and lines such as Norwegian (with its Freestyle Dining) has helped relax the entire eating experience. Kids’ clubs on ships are some of the best anywhere Kids’ clubs on cruise ships – be it Princess’s Youth Center, Carnival’s Camp

Ocean or Norwegian’s Splash Academy – are generally excellent. The latter, for example, is divided into four groups: Guppies (for six-month to two-yearolds – parents required), Turtles (three to five), Seals (six to nine) and Dolphins (ten to 12), and there’s Entourage – a special area for teens. Kids can enjoy a little independence, while parents and grandparents can do their own thing. There are lots of opportunities to be active… Whether hitting the running track, taking advantage of the included gym or trying out the climbing wall, there are many ways to stay active on board cruise ships, many of which are increasingly

embracing healthy-living. MSC Cruises’ Wellness Experience (run in association with Technogym) is aimed at gym fanatics who don’t want to let their regime slip because they’re on holiday. …and plenty to relax. The spa is another area that has grown with cruise ships. Once seen as a novelty, spas (like gyms) are now a necessity. While prime position, pool-side loungers are always fought over, cruise ships are generally well equipped with enough chairs and the growing number of pools (often three or four per ship, some adults-only), also means that all 2,000 to 3,000 guests aren’t all scrambling to get on a single diving board.

THREE CRUISES PERFECT FOR THE WHOLE FAMILY Nine nights in the Caribbean

Seven days in the Mediterranean

Seven days in Alaska

Royal Caribbean – Anthem of the Seas New Jersey (round-trip), August 3, 2017 From £1,559pp

Norwegian Cruise Line – Norwegian Epic Rome (round-trip), August 2, 2017 From £909pp

Carnival Cruise Line – Carnival Legend Seattle (round-trip), August 15, 2017 From £7,045pp

The Quantum-class ships have bumper cars, West End-style shows and a tranquil Solarium area. This trip, during August, is ideal for the summer break.

This affordable summer trip takes in Florence, Naples and Barcelona – plus the ship’s Aqua Park is ridiculously fun.

Who says summer holidays have to be spent in the Caribbean or Med? This trip combines fun with expedition in a way that all the family will enjoy. CRUISE-ADVISER.COM

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Founded in 2014, cruise adviser brings together the most insightful commentary, news and analysis for those looking to sell cruise holidays Published ten times a year, cruise adviser is aimed at front-line travel agents and other sellers of cruises Following this March 2017 issue, look out for the new guide — arriving in travel agencies on April 1, 2017

For the latest cruise news and interviews visit cruise-adviser.com (compatible on smartphone and tablet) You can find us on Twitter (@cruiseadviser) and Facebook (facebook.com/cruiseadviser) For more information about print and online marketing, please email advertising@cruise-adviser.com


March 2017| Aft

NEW CREW

RCI hires UK sales director and strategic account manager

New sales and marketing director for Fred Olsen Fred Olsen Cruise Lines has announced the appointment of Justin Stanton as its new sales and marketing director, reporting into Mike Rodwell, managing director. Stanton has been head of marketing for Fred Olsen Cruise Lines since 2012. “I am very pleased to have the opportunity to further develop Fred. Olsen’s position as a leader in smallership cruising. We have fantastic support from our trade partners, who are vital to our business,” he said.

Scenic and Emerald expand UK team Royal Caribbean has hired Amanda Darrington as sales director UK & Ireland, replacing Ben Bouldin, who was recently promoted to managing director and associate vice president. The company also announced the appointment of Rosie Long, who will join the UK and Ireland sales team as strategic account manager for Thomas Cook (TCCT). Darrington was formerly sales director for Funway Holidays.

Long will offer bespoke product advice to enable agents to sell Royal Caribbean holidays and keep them informed of training, events and other incentives. Speaking of the appointment, Ben Bouldin said: “Amanda is the perfect person to lead our sales team into 2017 and beyond so it’s with great pleasure that we welcome her onboard.” Darrington will start her role leading the 30-strong sales team on April 24.

Chris Austin joins Seabourn from luxury hotel chain as senior vice president, global sales and marketing Seabourn has named hospitality executive Chris Austin as senior vice president, global sales and marketing. Austin, a Brit who spent the past 30 years of his career with Starwood Hotels & Resorts, will be responsible for Seabourn’s overall marketing efforts, brand management, sales, and public relations. “Chris is a perfect fit to lead our global sales and marketing efforts during a period where we are expanding our fleet and overall

capacity,” said Richard Meadows, president of Seabourn. “He is passionate about people, which is vital from a guest and trade relations standpoint. Moreover, his significant experience in the luxury travel category will help us further expand our leadership position in the ultraluxury travel segment.” To read more about Seabourn’s expansion read Gary Bucahanan’s report on the launch of the Seabourn Encore in Singapore on p24.

Scenic and Emerald Waterways have promoted Angela Sloan to head of sales UK, while Chris Barker has been appointed as head of marketing, in an expansion of their UK team. Sloan was formerly the company’s national sales manager. Barker has previously worked at Manchester Airports Group and Shearings Holidays. Chris Townson, UK managing director, said: “We have the right balance of determination, brand and, most importantly, people to continue on this amazing journey.”

Riviera Travel hires new product manager Riviera Travel has announced the appointment of Lucy Goodman as product manager, working within the long haul product team headed up by Hercules Zeris. Goodman, who has worked overseas for two UK tour operators in destinations from the Balearics to South East Asia, said: “I’m excited to have joined the team here at Riviera – there is such a fantastic array of choice for customers.”

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March 2017| Aft

FAM TRIPS

Avalon launches group offer for 2018 programme

APT offers exchange rate freeze on 2018 cruises APT is offering agents an early saving discount on European and Russian river cruising from its 2018 programme. The company is offering an “exchange rate freeze” on 2018 prices, basing all quotes on pre-EU referendum exchange rates. A 15-day Amsterdam to Budapest cruise is priced at £2,595 per person if booked before April 29, 2017.

MSC offers agents chance to see flagship

Avalon Waterways has launched its 2018 river cruise programme with a £110 per person discount for all group bookings made before April 28, 2017. One in every ten passengers travels free on Avalon’s Panorama Suite Ships and one in eight on each Avalon Deluxe Ship. The company also enables agents to hold bookings for up to 28 days.

Janet Parton, Avalon’s head of trade sales commented: “For the first time, we are offering agents the opportunity to benefit from a free group place to pass on to their customers, or for the agency to benefit from a staff member being able to experience an Avalon cruise with just the flight and transfer costs to pay.”

Azamara offers monthly events for the travel trade Azamara Club Cruises is offering agents the chance to sample its Cruise Global, Connect Local cultural immersion events around the UK. The name of the programme is an umbrella for 13 groupings that include Eat Local, Eco Local, Stay Local and Golf Local. An event will now be held each month with between 12 and 15 agents invited to each one. Celebrate Local will be held at Royal Ascot. Azamara confirmed sales for January were up 85 per cent year-on-year.

Richard Twynam, managing director of Azamara Club Cruises UK & Ireland said: “We couldn’t have asked for a better start to 2017. Not only have we reaffirmed our commitment to destination with the new developments of Stay Longer, Experience More, but we have also seen January sales rocket. This reflects the great confidence that consumers have in our brand, and we continue to be grateful to our trade partners for their ongoing support in ensuring this is the case.”

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MSC Cruises will be running “in excess of 1,000 ship visits this year,” according to Steve Williams, the company’s director of sales. They will include visits on Preziosa, the fleet’s current flagship, in Southampton, Dublin and Cork in May and September. The number of ship visits in 2018 will be ramped up with MSC Magnifica being based in Southampton from April to October.

CMV fill half of places on 2017 trade visits More than half of the places on Cruise & Maritime Voyages’ 2017 ship visits have been filled up, the company has confirmed. The line had set aside 700 places for travel agent visits across nine ports around the country. Agents will be treated to a presentation, refreshments, a tour and a five course lunch on board. Agents should email agents@ cruiseandmaritime.com for more details or call 0844 414 6140.

Don’t forget to enter our competition on p55 to win a cabin for two on MSC’s latest launch. For more on the latest fam trips and incentives visit cruise-adviser.com


March 2017| Aft

JARGON BUSTER

Please be seated for your meal… not once, but twice Why cruise lines have resisted the move towards flexible dining for so long The theatre of the evening meal is one of the great joys of cruise. Traditionally, guests have had just a few options: one of two sittings in the main dining room, or a more relaxed meal at the buffet. In order to fit guests in and ease congestion in the kitchen, cruise lines have divided sittings to first (about 6.30pm) and second (about 8.30pm). Guests are given the same table each night, meaning they get to know fellow guests and their waiters and can plan their day around the meal – opting for a pre-dinner spa treatment or post-dinner show. However, in recent years, there has been a move towards flexible dining times (Norwegian Cruise Line calls it Freestyle Dining), where diners can turn up and eat when they want. It it also means guests don’t have to sit with the same people every night – meaning you’re not at risk of getting stuck with some veteran bore. Many guests prefer this freedom, but the main hall can get very busy

at optimum times like 7.30pm, with queues a possibility. In fact, some cruise lines have already backtracked, with Royal Caribbean reining in its Dynamic Dining programme and creating My Time Dining in two of its restaurants instead.

Increasingly, even small and midsized cruise ships will offer more than the buffet and main dining room, with several speciality restaurants, often a French, an Italian and a steak house, that sometimes incur an extra cost or can only be booked once per cruise.

THREE STUNNING MAIN DINING ROOMS Eight nights across the Atlantic

Nine days on the Mississippi

Seven nights in Alaska

Cunard – Queen Mary 2 Southampton-New York City, August 4, 2017 From £1,149pp

AQSBC – American Queen New Orleans (round-trip), December 25, 2017 From $1,799

Celebrity Cruises – Celebrity Solstice Seattle (round-trip), July 14, 2017 From £1079pp

“Where grandeur and occasion combine,” says Cunard of its stunning Britannia Restaurant (main picture).

The JM White Dining Room is among the most impressive main dining rooms you’re likely to see on any river.

The Solstice-class Main Dining Room on Celebrity Cruises boasts an incredible room-spanning chandelier and a two-storey glass wine tower. CRUISE-ADVISER.COM

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March 2017| Aft

DIRECTORY Got a cruise query? Let us assist you. The cruise adviser directory provides you with the vital contact details for all major cruise lines operating in the UK – meaning trade sales support is never more than a phone call away

CRUISE LINES!

Information missing or out of date? Email info@cruise-adviser.com

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March 2017| Aft

alexis.viols@belmond.com Tom Dumbrell, sales manager — Afloat in France 020 3117 1408 tom.dumbrell@belmond.com 

A 

A-Rosa Lucia Rowe, head of sales UK and Ireland 078 4202 6013 l.rowe@a-rosa.de  Amadeus River Cruises Brooke Daniels, UK sales manager 080 0035 6411 brooke@fredrivercruises.co.uk  AmaWaterways Jamie Loizou, sales, marketing and digital director 033 3305 3902 jamieloizou@amawaterways.com  American Cruise Lines Susan Shultz, director of sales +1 203 453 6800 susan@americancruiselines.com  American Queen Steamboat Company Katrina Weston, general manager 01223 568 904 k.weston@aqgsa.com  APT Touring Kate Ashman, sales and commercial specialist 01494 736 147 agentclub@aptouring.co.uk  Atlas/Kompas Predrag Krivokapic, president +1 954 258 8531 / +385 9 1975 1735 sales@atlas-croatia.com  Aurora Expeditions Talia Schwartzman, sales executive +61 2 9252 1033 agents@auroraexpeditions.co.uk  Avalon Waterways James Mortimer, agency sales executive 020 8315 4585 agencysales@avaloncruises.co.uk  Azamara Club Cruises Lori Scanella, business support executive 01932 834 379 salessupport.uk@rccl.com 

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Carnival Cruise Line Luke Smith, senior partnership manager 020 7378 4660 carnivalsalesuk@carnival.com  Celebrity Cruises Isabelle Charlton / Victoria Shipp 01932 834 379 (option 2) salessupport@rccl.com  Celestyal Cruises Andreas Genthe, country manager sales +30 216 400 9633 m.shekeris@celestyalcruises.com  Coral Expeditions Jan Jepsen, UK and Europe representative 07702 714 150 jan@intouchrep.com  Cosmos Tours & Cruises James Mortimer, agency sales executive 020 8315 4585 agencysales@cosmostours.co.uk  CroisiEurope Gabrielle Alam, head of sales and marketing UK 020 8328 1281 resuk@croisieurope.com  Cruise & Maritime Voyages Lisa Jacobs, head of trade sales 0844 414 6140 lisa.jacobs@cruiseandmaritime.com  Crystal Cruises Mick Dupont, head of UK sales 020 7399 7602 mick@cruiseportfolio.co.uk  Cruising Excursions Martin Lomax, sales director 0800 091 8274 traveltrade@cruisingexcursions.com  Cunard Line Natasha Richardson, director of sales operations 023 8065 7259 natasha.richardson@carnivalukgroup.com

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Belmond Alexis Viols, director of sales – Road to Mandalay and Belmond Orcaella +66 2 267 4881 2 Ext 19

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March 2017| Aft

Hebridean Island Cruises Lisa White, reservations manager 01756 704 704 lisa.white@hebridean.co.uk  Heritage Line Andreas Schroetter, director of sales and marketing +84 120 395 2242 dosm@heritage-line.com  Holland America Line James Scott, business development representative 0844 338 8600 james.scott@hollandamerica.co.uk Lucy Harris, business development representative 0844 338 8600 lucy.harris@hollandamerica.co.uk  Hurtigruten Anthony Daniels, head of sales 020 8846 2666 anthony.daniels@hurtigruten.com 

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Disney Cruise Line Juliet Holden, account executive 080 0171 2317  E

Emerald Waterways Lewis Quigley, trade marketing executive 0161 233 1988 lewis.quigley@scenic.co.uk  eWaterways Cruises Emma Wild, head of sales 0808 168 1458 salesuk@ewaterways.co.uk  F

Far Horizon Brooke Daniels, UK sales manager 0800 035 3189 brooke@fredrivercruises.co.uk  Fred Olsen Cruise Lines Becky Smith, trade support manager 01473 746 164 cruise.sales@fredolsen.co.uk  Fred Olsen River Cruises Brooke Daniels, UK sales manager 0800 021 3172 brooke@fredrivercruises.co.uk  French America Line Kevin Griffin, director 020 7723 2450 kcgriffin@frenchamericaline.com 

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Intrepid Travel Andrew Turner, senior business development manager 080 8274 5719 ukbdm@intrepidtravel.com  K

Katerina Line Dea Baretincic, sales manager +385 51 603 409 dea@katarina-line.hr  L

Lindblad Expeditions Jacinta McEvoy vice president global sales +1 212 261 9000 jacintam@expeditions.com 

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G Adventures Jerrine Barnett, new business development manager 07432 429 836 / 020 7243 9870 ext. 9948 jbarnett@gadventures.com 

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The Majestic Line Marie McGhee, sales manager 01369 707951 info@themajesticline.co.uk  MSC Cruises Victoria Taylor, sales operations manager 020 7092 8182 ukinsidesales@msccruises.co.uk

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Hapag-Lloyd Cruises Mike Flanagan, sales representative UK and Ireland 07921 223 176 mike.flanagan@hl-cruises.com

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March 2017| Aft

0870 068 9142 sales@poseidonexpeditions.com  Princess Cruises Victoria Snelgar, sales operations manager 023 8065 6613 victoria.snelgar@princesscruises.co.uk  Pullmantur Simon Chambers, operations manager 0800 021 3180 simon.chambers@fredholidays.co.uk 

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Noble Caledonia Agency sales 020 7752 0000 agencysales@noble-caledonia.co.uk  Norwegian Cruise Line Jeremy McKenna, head of sales UK and Ireland 07408 805 216 jmckenna@ncl.com Karen Kundi, partnership relations manager 023 8124 5242 kkundi@ncl.com 

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Quark Expeditions Pushparaj Shetty, senior distribution manager +1 416 645 8248 push.shetty@quarkexpeditions.com 

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Oceania Cruises Priti Mehta, head of sales UK and Ireland 023 8024 8604 pmehta@oceaniacruises.com  One Ocean Expeditions Debra Taylor, new business development 07956 852 197 debra@toucanmoon.com 

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Regent Seven Seas Cruises Caroline Moody, business development executive 023 8068 2283 agencysales@rssc.com Anna Salter, business development executive 023 8068 2283 agencysales@rssc.com  Royal Caribbean International Trade support team 01932 834 379 salessupport.uk@rccl.com  Riviera Travel Darren Mussell, agency sales assistant manager 01283 744 307 agencysales@rivieratravel.co.uk  The River Cruise Line Rebecca Brett, agency sales manager 07824 337 290 rebeccabrett@diamondhols.co.uk 

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P&O Cruises Natasha Richardson, director of sales operations 023 8065 7259 natasha.richardson@carnivalukgroup.com  Pandaw Marco Rosa, vice president sales and marketing 07973 876 967 marco@pandaw.com  Paul Gaugin Mick Dupont, head of UK sales 020 7399 7602 mick@cruiseportfolio.co.uk  Pearl Seas Cruises Susan Shultz, director of sales +1 203 458 5280 susan.shultz@pearlseascruises.com  Ponant Stephen Winter, international sales director +33 6 4803 7931 swinter@ponant.com  Poseidon Alexandra Prokopyeva, sales and marketing

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Saga Travel Sukina Fagg, national account manager 080 0074 8021 sukina.fagg@saga.co.uk  Scenic Lewis Quigley, trade marketing executive 0161 233 1988 lewis.quigley@scenic.co.uk

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March 2017| Aft

Seabourn James Scott, business development representative 084 4338 8600 james.scott@seabourn.co.uk Lucy Harris, business development representative 084 4338 8600 lucy.harris@seabourn.co.uk  SeaCloud Anja Ringel, vice president, international markting and sales +49 40 3095 9217 aringel@seacloud.com  SeaDream Yacht Club Mark Schmitt, sales director 07904 068 407 mschmitt@seadream.com  Shearings Michael Bowers, national sales manager 01942 823 449 sales.support@shearings.com  Silversea Sales support 020 7340 0700 salesuk@silversea.com  Star Clippers Danielle Dudley, UK sales manager 077 6585 2116 danielle@starclippers.co.uk 

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Uniworld Boutique River Cruises David Chidley, national sales manager 07408 855 544 dave.chidley@uniworld.com  V

Variety Cruises Chris Lorenzo, managing director, Seafarer Cruises 020 8324 3114 info@seafarerholidays.co.uk  Victoria Cruises Tom Antonucci, sales manager +1 212 818 1680 tom@victoriacruises.co.uk  Viking Cruises Andrew Schweitzer, regional sales manager (south) 07825 986 996 andrew.schweitzer@vikingcruises.com Jenny Wade, regional sales manager (north) 07966 995 012 jenny.wade@vikingcruises.com  Volga Dream Brooke Daniels, UK sales manager 0800 021 3186 brooke@fredrivercruises.co.uk  Voyages to Antiquity Michelle Daniels, head of groups and partnerships 01865 302 2565 m.daniels@voyagestoantiquity.com 

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Tauck Kathryn Coles, UK and Ireland sales manager 080 0810 8020 tauckreservations@tauck.co.uk  Thomson Cruises Andrew Isherwood Commercial support team 020 3451 2762 commercial.support@thomson.co.uk  Titan Travel Edwina Coppock, agency sales manager 012 9345 0726; 078 3465 2135 edwina.coppock@titantravel.co.uk 

W

Wendy Wu Tours  Adam White, trade support and marketing executive 020 7939 9560 adam.white@wendywutours.co.uk  Windstar Cruises Sales team (The Cruise Line) 0800 852 7248 windstarUK@cruiseline.co.uk 

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March 2017| Aft THINGS TO DO

GAMESROOM

Each month we will bring you a selection of things to do on your lunch break or journey to the office

CROSSWORD

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DOWN 1. Rural industry (11) 2. Marine trail sometimes luminous at night (4) 3. Polar (3) 4. What makes a vessel go (7) 5. Peninsula between the Red Sea and the Persian Gulf (6) 6. Conscientious (11) 10. Get cracking! (3,2,2) 12. Sea with Greek and Turkish shores(6) 17. The Emerald Isle (4) 18. Shipboard rendezvous after a hard day’s cruising (3)

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March 2017| Aft

QUIZ See bottom of page for answers

1. What does the Scoville scale measure? 2. Who wrote the 1960 novel To Kill A Mockingbird? 3. What is the most abundant pure element on earth? 4. Which British artist’s work includes a tiger shark in formaldehyde and a diamond-encrusted platinum skull? 5. Entomophobia is the fear of what? 6. Who wrote an autobiography called Losing My Virginity? 7. Popty ping is the Welsh word for which common household appliance? 8. What is the largest class of cruise ships in the world? 9. Who invented the jet engine? 10. To which planet does the moon Phobos belong?

11. The character Shylock appears in which Shakespeare play? 12. The classic 1990s Channel 4 sitcom Father Ted was set on which fictional island off the west coast of Ireland? 13. On which studio album does The Beatles’ song Eleanor Rigby appear? 14. Seaside will be the second new ship of 2017 for which cruise line? 15. Which of the following is not a Greek island: Zakynthos, Tzatziki, Santorini?

Competition time! Win a cabin for two for one night with MSC Cruises on board the incredible new MSC Meraviglia – “the ship for all seasons” – when the ship is launched in Le Havre on June 2, 2017. The lucky winner will be collected from London or Manchester and treated to a champagne breakfast coach journey through the Eurotunnel directly to Le Havre, before experiencing MSC’s first of 11 next generation smart ships. The ship combines timeless elegance with cutting-edge design, innovative dining venues and spectacular entertainment including two new shows from Cirque du Soleil exclusively designed for MSC Meraviglia. To enter, name the city pictured below and send your answer to info@cruise-adviser.com with the subject line as ‘March competition’.

Terms and conditions apply, see cruise-adviser.com/terms-conditions/ 4. Damien Hurst 5. Insects 6. Richard Branson

7. Microwave 10. Mars 8. Royal Caribbean’s Oasis class 11. The Merchant of Venice 9. Sir Frank Whittle 12. Craggy Island

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1. The heat of chillies 2. Harper Lee 3. Nitrogen

13. Revolver 14. MSC Cruises 15. Tzatziki

QUIZ ANSWERS


March 2017| Aft

THREE CRUISES FOR FOODIES 14-day transatlantic voyage

RECIPE

In the galley The best culinary delights at sea. This month: Viking Cruises’ mouthwatering Sachertorte Viking Ocean – Viking Sky Miami-Barcelona, March 4, 2018 From £3,475pp This special transatlantic voyage ends in Barcelona, one of the best cities in the world for food. There are some real treats on board, too. One way to spend the days at sea are cookery lessons at the excellent Kitchen Table.

11 days on the Douro

Scenic – Scenic Azure Porto (round-trip), November 7, 2017 From £2,995pp

Ingredients For the cake: 140g butter, softened 100g icing sugar, sieved 8 eggs, separated 140g dark chocolate 80g plain flour 100g sugar 2tbsp apricot jam For the glaze: 225g dark chocolate 2 tbsp butter Method Originally created by chef Franz Sacher in 1832, this most famous of Viennese desserts should be served with a pile of whipped cream. Preheat oven to 190 degrees and grease and line a 23cm cake tin.

Cream together the butter and icing sugar, then mix in the egg yolks, one at a time, until very creamy. Melt the chocolate in a heatproof bowl placed over a pan of simmering water. Add the melted chocolate into the mixture, then fold in the flour. In a separate bowl, beat the egg whites until they form soft peaks then fold in the sugar. Combine this mixture with the chocolate mixture. Pour the cake mixture into the prepared tin and bake for about 50 minutes to an hour until springy to the touch. Remove from the pan and cool on a wire rack. Heat the apricot jam and smooth over the entire torte. For the glaze, melt the chocolate and butter together in a bain-marie until smooth. Pour all over the cake and allow to cool before serving.

The Scenic Azure is the only Scenic ship sailing this majestic river — at just 96 passengers, it’s far smaller than other ships This cruise includes the Sundowner – an exclusive cocktail event at the Regua Museum.

35 days to Brazil

Oceania Cruises – Sirena San Diego-Rio De Janeiro, December 16, 2017 From £6,269pp Starting on the west coast of America and taking in Mexico, Costa Rica and Nicaragua before Brazil.Oceania is recognised for the quality of its food.

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March 2017| Aft

ON THE ROAD

Gemma Ashworth, 33, Carnival Cruise Line We speak to the people who make your job easier. This month: Carnival’s senior account manager What does your job entail on a day-to-day basis? As senior account manager for Carnival Cruise Line, UK & international, I manage several top agent accounts including Thomas Cook, Virgin Holidays and Advantage. So, although I am not necessarily on the road day in day out, I do spend a lot of time travelling from place to place visiting these agents all over the country.

accounts as possible and offers a personal touch.

How long have you worked in travel? I have worked in the travel industry for over 15 years, starting out as a travel adviser at the TUI call centre, working at First Choice’s Island Cruises as weddings and groups coordinator, moving into Thomas Cook’s product department, before I landed into a fantastic job with Carnival Cruise Line.

What do you listen to in the car? My personal playlist which can range from as far as Rod Stewart all the way to Justin Bieber.

What’s the best thing about being on the road? It’s a great opportunity to visit as many

What’s your favourite thing about working for Carnival? I love our Carnival Fun Team, they are

What’s the worst? There’s nothing worse than being stuck in traffic! Favorite place to visit? I don’t have a favourite place I like to visit, just my favourite people, which are all my agent accounts.

One thing you couldn’t live without on the road? I couldn’t live without my satnav, because I am rubbish with directions!

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amazing to work with and provide agents with the best level of service through engaging, educational and exciting events. Biggest myth about Carnival? The biggest myth I hear about Carnival is that we’re all about the ‘party cruise’ which just simply isn’t true. We offer a wide variety of entertainment and facilities onboard to suit every customer, including couples and families. If agents want to find out more, what should they do? If you would like to find out more information about Carnival Cruise Line from me and the team, contact us on 0208 940 4460 or email carnivalsalesuk@carnival.com.


March 2017 | Aft

FINAL WORD

Fight the Trump slump Why travel agents must be on the front line in the war against bigotry The executive order enacted by the new President of the United States, Donald Trump, on January 27 that stopped citizens from seven mostly Muslim countries travelling to the US was as controversial a piece of legislation as has ever been put into force. It was condemned both at home and abroad and, here in the UK, it inspired the petition to prevent Trump from making a state visit to the United Kingdom and speaking to the House of Commons. The reasons why it was so widely criticised were manifold – not only was it wrong, but it would probably do the US more harm than good. It is also unlikely to make America safer – indeed, the resentment it will engender could well have the opposite effect. In the last decade there have been no terrorist attacks committed by nationals from the seven banned countries (Iraq, Iran, Syria, Yemen, Somalia, Sudan and Libya) in America. In fact, the 12 deadly acts of terrorism committed by Muslims

on American soil since the September 11 attacks have all been carried out by either American citizens or legal residents, according to the thinktank New America. The fact that the terrorists actually responsible for the September 11 attacks were from Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Egypt and Lebanon (all unbanned countries) is an irony that wasn’t lost on The Washington Post which noted that Trump registered eight new companies in Saudi Arabia in August 2016. At a campaign rally in Alabama he bragged about selling “$40 million, $50 million” apartments to the Saudis. “Am I supposed to dislike them?” he asked. Travel makes the world a better place. It opens minds and helps to create a shared sense of belonging. Shutting down borders or building walls only serves to magnify the differences between us. From a tourism point of view sending out this sort of message does not help anything. There is already a so-called ‘Trump Slump’ for American

tourism with a 6.5 per cent fall in flight reservations year-on-year in the eight days following the executive order. In Western Europe the picture was twice as bad, with bookings down 13 per cent. Terrorism is clearly a global threat and one that isn’t going to go away. However, to ban every citizen from a country is not the way to deal with it. Working in the travel industry you will know that meeting and interacting with people from other cultures is one of the best ways of gaining new experiences, of opening up your mind and of doing away with prejudices, which are often delivered to distract people away from the real issues affecting countries. As travel agents you are on the front line of the war against bigotry. Tell your customers about the amazing places they can visit, the wonderful things they will see, the fantastic food they will try and the wonderful people they will meet. The world is a far better place when we all get along.

COMING NEXT TIME InFocus: Azamara Club Cruises

The Chilean fjords

Grand designs

We check in with Royal Caribbean Cruises’ luxury line, Azamara, for our latest InFocus piece.

Cruise Critic’s Adam Coulter heads off on a once-in-a-lifetime cruise taking in the scenery of Chilean Patagonia.

The biggest, best and most beautiful the ultra-luxury cruise market has to offer when it comes to interior design.

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