THE OFFICIAL MAGAZINE OF THE CRUISE INDUSTRY THIRD QUARTER 2019
New Milestones & Bright Horizon
Kevin Sheehan Jr. Shares Unique Model & Ways Stakeholders Can Benefit
Albino Di Lorenzo Discusses Sustainable Growth & Mutual Success
FCCA’s New Employment Counsel & CLIA’s Model of Sustainable Tourism Ships, Technologies & Trends Propelling Cruise Lines Updates from & Insights for Destinations Around the World
EXPERIENCE MAAGIC WELCOME TO PORT ST. MAARTEN N°1 PORT IN THE CARIBBEAN • Step Ashore Where Your Holiday Experiences Come Alive • The Gateway to Memorable & Enriching Experiences • Re-discover the ‘Friendly Island’ • A Remarkable & Fun Cruise Destination • Offering a unique and enriching cruise visitor experience • Award Winning Cruise Facilities • 55 Years Cruise Port St. Maarten
GREAT TOURS, SHOPPING, BEACHES AND RESTAURANTS WWW.PORTSTMAARTEN.COM
Harrisonâ€™s Cave Eco-Tour
Festive Fridays Bridgetown Night Market
Oistins Fish Fry
St. Nicholas Abbey
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More to explore
beyond our shores
With just 166 square miles, Barbados is packed with more attractions per square mile than any other island in the Caribbean! No matter which corner of the island you go, you are destined to find a rich combination of culture, heritage, adventure, sport, food, shopping, activities and hallmark attractions you can access within minutes.
FOUR PORTS - SAIL TODAY TO A WORLD-CLASS DESTINATION. You’ve just docked at the right port. The U.S. Virgin Islands awaits you with four ports and seven berths, where ships and crews can find a complete structure, while passengers can find a culture full of heart, great shopping, culinary attractions, and of course, breathtaking beaches surrounded by a beautiful turquoise sea. For more information visit www.viport.com and www.wico-vi.com.
©2019 U.S. Virgin Islands Department of Tourism
THIRD QUARTER 2019 WWW.TRAVELANDCRUISE.COM
ON THE COVER
Features Glenn Burnett, Senior Technical Advisor, Maritime Policy of CLIA, informs about “…a first major step in support of the IMO Strateg y.”
22 IMO Environment Update
24 Cruise Industry and the City of Dubrovnik Partner for Innovative Destination Stewardship
MEETINGS & EVENTS 26 Key Cruise Executives and Industry Stakeholders Conjure Business and Fun in ‘Maagical’ St. Maarten The
On the cover: San Juan, Puerto Rico
12 A Glimpse of Paradise (Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line) from President Kevin Sheehan Jr. From guest
07, 09 President’s Letter
Travel & Cruise Magazine © 2019. All Rights Reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part, in any form, electronic or otherwise, without written permission of the FCCA is prohibited. To subscribe or change your address, please send requests to email@example.com Florida-Caribbean Cruise Association (FCCA) 10390 USA Today Way Miramar, FL 33025 Phone: (954) 441-8881 Fax: (954) 441-3171 Published by:
In Partnership with:
demographics to a unique model both leading the way in terms of allowing guests to overnight in Grand Bahamas and giving the flexibility to create “special, memorable, tailored experiences,” the BPCL president shares what to know for stakeholders and travel advisors to maximize fulfillment for all.
30 Central America on Cruise Lines’ Radars with Event to Help Build Mutual Understanding and Success Central
American destinations and stakeholders were on the cruise map when more than 250 from throughout the region gathered with nearly 20 cruise executives for the FCCA Central America Cruise Summit in Costa Rica. The event celebrated a record-breaking year, with over 700 delegates in attendance—the highest number since the Conference began 13 years ago—enjoying ship visits, spectacular entertainment and insightful speakers.
34 CLIA Conference 2019
LET’S GET TECHNICAL 16 Sustainable Growth and Mutual Success: MSC Cruises VP and FCCA Operations Committee Chair Shares Their Commitment to the Caribbean
Albino Di Lorenzo discusses some of his functions, along with how MSC Cruises is growing rapidly, but sustainably, and what stakeholders need to know so all that interact with cruise tourism can better benefit from it. 20 FCCA Forms New Employment Counsel
The information in this publication is provided “as is.” FCCA, CLIA and its Member Lines disclaim all representations and warranties, expressed or implied, with respect to any information, services, products and materials contained herein. FCCA, CLIA and its Member Lines will in no event be liable for any damage or losses as a result of your use of this publication.
annual FCCA PAMAC Conference made mutual success appear for FCCA Platinum Members and cruise executives by animating business and fun, while showcasing St. Maarten’s remarkable recovery, through an agenda ranging from meetings and site visits to tours and receptions.
Extending its strides in working with governments to open employment opportunities for seafarers, FCCA and Member Lines have taken another step – and Liza Voticky, director of global talent attraction of RCCL and newly elected chair, will walk you through the counsel “made up of talented professionals that are committed to assisting member countries.”
36 CLIA LIVE Series Tours Australia and New Zealand
26 THIRD QUARTER 2019 | TRAVEL & CRUISE 3
DR CRUISE TO #
Catedral Primada de AmĂŠrica Santo Domingo
Features 52 Saint Lucia Forging Ahead with Village Tourism 56 Cayman Branching Out with Cruise Port and Downtown George Town Developments 56 Investor Excitement for USVI Tourism 57 Sint Maarten Invests in Human Resources, Standard of Service 62 CLIA’s 2019 Asia Outlook 64 CLIA Asia Focus: India and Indonesia
38 Celebrity Flora Makes a Mark with a Small Footprint
48 New Milestones and a Bright Horizon for Puerto Rico Carla
66 The Evolution of Service Excellence
50 Barbados’ Prosperous Past and Prolific Present Cruises to a Festive Future
70 FCCA Platinum Member Highlights
38 Royal Caribbean Fleet Expansion Cruises to Clean-Energy Future 38 Costa Cruises Takes Another Step in Its Sustainable Development Plan 39 Countdown for MSC Grandiosa 40 Seabourn’s Expedition Ships Bringing Travelers to New Depths 40 New Experiences for Princess’ Newbuilds 41 Curtain Raised on Seven Seas Splendor Offerings
Campos, Executive Director of Puerto Rico Tourism Company, shares some of the records broken and “innovative ways to create tools, strengthen alliances, renew our inventory and diversify service and entertainment options” – as well as the cruise industry’s “important role in furthering Puerto Rico’s reputation.”
MEMBERS & TRAVEL AGENTS
Aquila’s Center for Cruise Excellence President Beth Kelly Hatt tells how it has evolved from an online Tour Guide Excellence certification, to now developing programs for multiple clients, from ports and tour operators to entire destinations, including a few—Aruba, Dominican Republic and Puerto Rico—that have invested in training since 2013.
41 New Orleans and Princess Tiana Take Center Stage in Disney Wonder Enhancements 42 Oceania Remasters Riviera 42 Norwegian Cruise Line Launches ‘Free the Beat’ Program 43 Cunard Launches Fleetwide Artist in Residence Program 44 Silversea to Enhance Elegance 45 Carnival’s New ‘Crew Gratitude’ Video Series 47 The Appeal of a Small Cruise Ship
THIRD QUARTER 2019 | TRAVEL & CRUISE 5
PRESIDENT’S LETTER: FCCA
EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE Micky Arison FCCA CHAIRMAN CHAIRMAN CARNIVAL CORPORATION Michael Bayley PRESIDENT & CEO ROYAL CARIBBEAN INTERNATIONAL Adam Goldstein VICE CHAIRMAN ROYAL CARIBBEAN CRUISES LTD. Jeff Vahle PRESIDENT DISNEY SIGNATURE EXPERIENCES Richard E. Sasso CHAIRMAN MSC CRUISES (USA) INC. Andrew Stuart PRESIDENT & CEO NORWEGIAN CRUISE LINE
FCCA STAFF Michele M. Paige PRESIDENT Adam Ceserano SENIOR VICE PRESIDENT Terri Cannici VICE PRESIDENT, OPERATIONS Omari Breakenridge DIRECTOR, DIGITAL STRATEGY & CREATIVE SERVICES Mario Aguirre DIRECTOR, MEMBERSHIP EVENTS & PROGRAMS Justin Paige DIRECTOR, CORPORATE COMMUNICATIONS & STRATEGIC MARKETING PARTNERSHIPS
Partnerships are invaluable in both business and life, but like any precious resource, advantageous partners are rare. Fortunately, the FCCA mines them and provides direct access to decision-makers from our Member Lines to help stakeholders maximize cruise tourism’s potential. We offer numerous meetings and events throughout the year so these parties can develop understanding and relationships, which has proven to pave the way for mutual success. This is spotlighted for those of you reading at Seatrade Europe, with our continuing initiative to create international ties for our Caribbean Michele with Holland America Line President and Latin American partners, or our Orlando Ashford at FCCA’s welcome reception for Seatrade Cruise Global FCCA Cruise Conference & Trade Show in San Juan, which gives attendees a chance to learn from and promote to more than 100 cruise executives— including over 10 presidents and above—during meetings, workshops, networking opportunities and more. You can read all about similar opportunities in the following pages, including how business and relationship development was conjured for our Platinum Members in the ‘Maagical’ St. Maarten at the FCCA PAMAC Conference—one of the many exclusive Platinum events throughout the year joining members with executives—and how more than 250 Central American stakeholders could target nearly 20 cruise executives at the FCCA Central America Cruise Summit in Costa Rica. As the industry continues its ascent, the need for partnerships keeps pace. I am proud that this is FCCA’s foundation and that we and our Member Lines continue to further focus on the people throughout destinations, with the aim of empowering communities and improving every place where cruises call. For FCCA, this has taken form in a new initiative to better the possibilities of hiring seafarers from the Caribbean and Latin America by forming the FCCA Employment Counsel. The theme of partnership also abounds in the direct addresses by cruise executives. Kevin Sheehan Jr.—president of Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line—shares what stakeholders and travel advisors need to know to maximize fulfillment for all, and Albino Di Lorenzo—vice president of operations for MSC Cruises and chair of the FCCA Operations Committee—discusses some of his functions, along with how MSC Cruises is growing rapidly, but sustainably, and how stakeholders can interact with cruise lines. Of course, destinations still drive decisions, and developments by destinations and stakeholders are also featured—from Puerto Rico’s record success and continued focus on improvements, to new tours and ports that further build demand and add capacity. Hopefully this issue also provides knowledge or inspiration for you, as success for any means success for all! Respectfully yours,
Jessica Lalama EXECUTIVE ASSISTANT Vanessa Gutierrez ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT
Michele M. Paige President, Florida-Caribbean Cruise Association (FCCA) THIRD QUARTER 2019 | TRAVEL & CRUISE 7
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PRESIDENT’S LETTER: CLIA
CLIA GLOBAL EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE Adam Goldstein CLIA GLOBAL CHAIRMAN VICE CHAIRMAN ROYAL CARIBBEAN CRUISES LTD. Arnold Donald PRESIDENT & CEO CARNIVAL CORPORATION & PLC Micky Arison CHAIRMAN CARNIVAL CORPORATION & PLC Pierfrancesco Vago EXECUTIVE CHAIRMAN MSC CRUISES Frank Del Rio CEO NORWEGIAN CRUISE LINE HOLDINGS Richard Fain CHAIRMAN & CEO ROYAL CARIBBEAN CRUISES LTD. Manfredi Lefebvre CHAIRMAN SILVERSEA CRUISES, LTD.
CLIA STAFF Kelly Craighead PRESIDENT & CEO Megan King SENIOR VICE PRESIDENT, STRATEGIC COMMUNICATIONS & RESEARCH Mike McGarry SENIOR VICE PRESIDENT, PUBLIC AFFAIRS & GOVERNMENT RELATIONS Caroline Johnson SENIOR VICE PRESIDENT, MEMBERSHIP OPERATIONS
Welcome to this edition to Travel & Cruise, the official magazine of the global cruise industry. Earlier this year, I shared my immediate priorities: to listen and learn as much as I can to truly understand the needs of CLIA members and other key stakeholders – and to use that information to guide the evolution of CLIA in the months and years ahead. As leaders, it is crucial that we not only listen to the voices in our community, but also that we listen to and collaborate with organizations affected by the cruise industry. In this issue, we share with you how this approach has led to our new partnership with the City of Dubrovnik to help establish it as a model of sustainable tourism in the Adriatic region and beyond. We plan to apply the Global Sustainable Tourism Council standards for responsible destination management to better manage the resident and visitor experience in Dubrovnik. The collaboration will focus both on investment into improved tourism infrastructure and on adherence to globally recognized best practices. We have many upcoming events, which I hope to see you at, starting with Seatrade Europe, where we will be releasing a new Environmental Report. It will take place September 11-13 in Hamburg, Germany. CLIA’s annual Executive Partner Summit will be held at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel Miami from December 12-13, which will be followed by the Hotel Food and Beverage Conference. As always, thank you for your continued support. I look forward to working with you, valued members of our community, to keep propelling the industry forward, increasing the already dynamic cruise innovations, sustainability efforts and personally tailored traveler experiences. Best,
Kelly Craighead President and CEO
Brian Salerno SENIOR VICE PRESIDENT, MARITIME POLICY Joshua S. Good SENIOR VICE PRESIDENT, GLOBAL FINANCE
THIRD QUARTER 2019 | TRAVEL & CRUISE 9
A Glimpse of Paradise (Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line) from President Kevin Sheehan Jr.
oth a recent venture and newer FCCA Member Line, Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line (BPCL) is already making waves, and President Kevin Sheehan Jr. joined Travel & Cruise for an interview to discuss their unique model, guests and what to know for tourism stakeholders and travel advisors to maximize fulfillment for all. Please share a bit about the background of Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line, including when it was founded and how it became what it is today? My father, Kevin Sheehan Sr., introduced me to the opportunity of getting involved in the cruise industry based on his extensive experience of being the former CEO at Norwegian Cruise Line. We purchased Grand Celebration, our first ship, back in December 2016 after identifying a niche in the market with Bahamas Paradise 12 THIRD QUARTER 2019 | TRAVEL & CRUISE
Cruise Line. We saw a growth in demand for people wanting to get away for just a couple of days, at an attractive price, and something different than simply checking into a hotel on the beach. The growth we saw in the first year gave us the confidence to add a second ship to sail between Palm Beach and Grand Bahamas, so we added the Grand Classica, to our fleet in the summer of 2018. Today, we offer daily departures for two-night cruises on two unique ships from Palm Beach to Grand Bahama Island â€“ the only two-night cruise on the market. As president, please share what makes Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line a unique product in todayâ€™s cruise industry? As a boutique cruise line, we have much more flexibility when it comes to developing new and unique offers, which allows us
to be innovators in the space. For example, our Cruise & Stay program is leading the way in terms of allowing guests to overnight in Grand Bahamas. By combining the unique daily departures from Palm Beach, our guests can spend one night aboard one of our two ships, disembark for one, two, three or four nights at a resort on Grand Bahama Island, and then spend an additional night on board as they return to Palm Beach. An exceptionally unique perk, travelers booking the Cruise & Stay package have the potential to experience both ships in our fleet, sailing on a different ship each way. Cruise & Stay sets us apart from the competition, is an attractive alternative to a traditional cruise, and helps introduce new customers to cruising. It is also a great opportunity for our trade partners. Our program is a truly unique offering in the industry.
Due to our size, we also have the flexibility to develop exciting new ways for cruisers to experience our ships – developing specialty cruises, like ArtSea, the first-ever interactive arts and music experience at sea, or music conferences, for example. We can create special, memorable, tailored experiences. The ability to charter one of our ships, depart any day of the week, or squeeze in a relaxing getaway into just two-nights are all unique aspects to what we offer.
families with children dominate, while Baby Boomers are more prevalent from September to February. Solo travelers pay no single supplement on any sailing, so we are popular with that audience. We also provide discounts to military veter-
Who is the target traveler for this product? Why? The target traveler for our cruises is between ages 25 and 45. Most customers come from within 200 to 300 miles and drive to Palm Beach. Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line draws from a wide demographic, from singles and couples on weekend getaways to weekday travelers who are typically cruising as part of a longer tour. First-time cruisers comprise a big chunk of the business. From July to August,
“WE CAN CREATE SPECIAL, MEMORABLE, TAILORED EXPERIENCES.” ans, teachers, first responders and others. Finally, we are starting to see a growth in our international guests, predominately from Canada and Latin America, but as we expand our reach through technological advances, I can see that grow into the UK and the rest of Europe.
When travelers set foot aboard one of your two ships, Grand Classica or Grand Celebration, what are a few highlights they will see while sailing? Grand Classica and Grand Celebration both feature sprawling sun decks with swimming pools, al fresco dining with stellar sunset views; full-service spas; interactive kids’ programs; and a variety of entertainment options including nightly theater performances, live bands and the popular Par-a-Dice Casino. Each ship features signature and unique dining venues, all of which exemplify the comfortable luxury appeal for our guests, including The Rock Grill—an interactive experience where guests can cook their own meats and veggies on a lava rock— or our Admiral’s Steak and Seafood with featured items such as Angus Beef Carpaccio and Peruvian Sea Bass. One area that guests comment most on and makes me extremely proud is the crew and the friendly and exceptional service they provide. Our seasoned crew, hotel
THIRD QUARTER 2019 | TRAVEL & CRUISE 13
“…WE HAVE MUCH MORE FLEXIBILITY WHEN IT COMES TO DEVELOPING NEW AND UNIQUE OFFERS…” directors, and entertainment personnel bring the whole experience alive and deliver and exceed our guests’ expectations day after day. I believe we have the best crew in the industry. Are both of the ships identical? While Grand Classica and Grand Celebration are similar in look, they are not identical. The Grand Classica boasts 658 staterooms and eight dining venues with views of the ocean, daily sunrises and breathtaking sunsets. Of the eight dining venues, my favorites include The Rock Grill, A Slice Above and The Crow’s Nest Sports Bar & Grill. While sailing on this ship, guests can stop by The Plunge Bar for their favorite drinks before heading to one of our award-winning, nightly shows at The Legends Grand Theater. While sailing aboard the Grand Celebration, guests have access to seven dining venues, bars and lounges, as well as
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750 spacious staterooms. Younger cruisers enjoy dancing the night away at The Dancing Martian, which features a live DJ or hanging out by the pool and hot tubs on the Luna Deck for amazing, nightly views of starry skies. At The Helm, which was recently dedicated to Pfc. George Carter, guests can grab a book and a glass of wine as they relax in peace before disembarking the ship to Grand Bahama Island. Business travelers and MICE groups are welcome to host their annual retreats and meetings in our Aries Conference Room before heading to dinner at Stellar Prime. What are the benefits for travel advisors that sell Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line? Travel advisors who are verified sellers of Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line are in for a treat, as the benefits are countless, and we’re really making a huge investment into this area moving forward. We
understand that without travel advisors, we would not be as successful as we are today, and we are constantly looking for ways to improve our working relationship with those who understand this industry best. Our offers include no non-commissionable fees (NCFs), a base 15 percent commission on all cruise and Cruise & Stay bookings, a dedicated website for their bookings (www.paradisepartnership. com) and seminars at sea that help them further understand our unique product. We want to make the lives of travel professionals as easy as possible, so we have a few things in the works, including a Travel Advisor Manual, a dedicated agent booking portal with marketing and training assets for travel advisors to use; a toll-free number with both English- and Spanish-speaking agents available to assist with reservations; a new simplified pricing strategy; and shipboard luncheons specially designed for them.
Crystal Caves, Grand Cayman. This is a creative representation; stepping in the water is not permitted.
Let’s Get Technical
Sustainable Growth and Mutual Success: MSC Cruises VP and FCCA Operations Committee Chair Shares Their Commitment to the Caribbean
lbino Di Lorenzo, vice president of operations for MSC Cruises USA, has served as chair of the FCCA Operations Committee for a relatively short span, but has already spearheaded initiatives including the formation of the FCCA Employment Counsel. Between trips for his roles in both MSC and FCCA, and while preparing for the FCCA Cruise Conference & Trade Show, he joined Travel & Cruise for an interview to discuss some of his functions, along with how MSC Cruises is growing rapidly, but sustainably, and what stakeholders need to know so all that interact with cruise tourism can better benefit from it. Thank you for talking with us today. Can you start by giving a brief breakdown of your functions as both MSC’s vice president of operations and FCCA’s Operations Committee chair? At MSC Cruises I am responsible for leading a team in charge of the main functional operative areas related to turnaround operations and guest services in North America, including ground services and pre-/post-cruise packages. In addition, my team also manages all the oper-
16 THIRD QUARTER 2019 | TRAVEL & CRUISE
ative aspects of onboard special events, charters and large groups. In my role, I am also directly involved in the strategic vessel deployment and introduction of new destinations for MSC Cruises, while also leading negotiations with port and government authorities in North America and the Caribbean to form strategic alliances.
“…TOGETHER WE CAN CREATE A LONGLASTING PRODUCT THAT NOT ONLY BENEFITS THE GUEST EXPERIENCE OR US AS A CRUISE LINE, BUT ALSO THE DEVELOPMENT AND IMPROVEMENT OF THE LOCAL COMMUNITIES…”
The FCCA Operations Committee that I have the honor of leading includes numerous high-level executives from Member Lines. The Committee focuses focusing on operational matters and decisions on behalf of their cruise brands, with the aim of upholding the FCCA’s mission of discussing cruise industry topics. This includes reviewing tourism development, ports, safety and security; fostering an understanding of the industry and its practices for destinations’ private and public sectors; generating increased revenue opportunities for ports and destinations; and enhancing the destination experience and amount of cruise passengers returning as stayover visitors. To do this, we meet at least monthly with each other, FCCA and stakeholders in order to constantly examine matters of interest throughout the region; provide information and input at FCCA meetings and events; and frequently perform site visits with duties such as reviewing projects and holding meetings with everyone from key stakeholders to all members of the community—all with that same mission in mind.
MSC Cruises is a relatively new player both in cruise tourism, in general, and the Caribbean, in particular. What should Caribbean and Latin American destinations and stakeholders know about your brand and guests? Having grown to become the number one cruise line in Europe, we are now in the midst of a fleet expansion plan that will see our guest capacity triple in just 10 years, which will allow us to further extend our presence across the world. Sustainably growing our footprint in the Caribbean is now a top priority for us. We are substantially increasing the number of ships that we deploy in these waters and the number of ports that we reach, bringing some of most innovative and environmentally friendly ships to this region. MSC Cruises’ drive to equip our current fleet and new builds with the latest technologies available helps us lower our environmental footprint wherever we operate. This past season we had five of our cruise ships deployed across the Caribbean, homeporting in Bridgetown, Cozumel, Fort de France, Pointe à Pitre and Miami. In November, MSC
“BESIDES THE FACT THAT WE CARE A GREAT DEAL ABOUT SUSTAINABLE TOURISM OURSELVES, OUR GUESTS ENJOY BEING INVOLVED IN THESE PROJECTS AND DOING GOOD FOR THE PLANET.” Meraviglia will join our fleet in the region. More ships will join them from 2020 onwards. Of course, we are working with local authorities, travel agents and other partners to accomplish this expansion, seeking to establish partnerships in the ports and destinations that we reach—with the longterm vision that only a family-owned and family-run company can provide.
It is no secret that the industry has furthered its efforts to engage—and benefit—the communities that welcome cruise guests. During some of those Operations Committee site visits, have you noticed any fruits of these labors? One of the most important elements for our guests to enjoy their time in port is a great local product. Without this product, the cruise line cannot accomplish what we wish to accomplish, which is an overall great cruise and travel experience for our guests. Being a member of FCCA and having the opportunity to work together with the local communities and see their involvement is extremely rewarding. In the end it is our guests that we want to satisfy, as this is the core of our business; however, we are fully aware that we cannot accomplish this without the collaboration of the involved local population. Traveling to these destinations, attending the Operations Committee site visits and coming up with new ways to constantly improve the overall product is an ongoing evolution. We listen to our guests to find out what works and what does not, and we hope that through this feedback, together we can THIRD QUARTER 2019 | TRAVEL & CRUISE 17
Let’s Get Technical
create a long-lasting product that not only benefits the guest experience or us as a cruise line, but also the development and improvement of the local communities, who put in their great efforts to achieve this mutual goal. What is the main message you would deliver during a Town Hall Meeting on behalf of both MSC Cruises and the industry/FCCA? Speaking on behalf of the cruise industry, I will continue to highlight the multiple economic benefits that cruise tourism can have in the economies of the ports and islands our cruise ships visit. This goes above and beyond the direct impact that every single cruise ship call produces. In fact, many cruise guests will like the destinations that they visit so much that they will come back in the future, for longer stays. As an MSC Cruises representative, I look forward to stressing our long-term commitment to the Caribbean, its natural habitat and to all our partners around the region. The sustainable growth of our operation in this region will continue to generate great opportunities for all. As a brand with global reach, we welcome more than 180 nationalities on board our fleet every year. We look forward to continuing to bring this amazing diversity to the many islands and nations that we visit, helping them capture an ever-greater portion of international tourism. How does that message change into action for locals looking for more cruise business, even without the benefit of FCCA’s direct access to cruise executives like you? First of all, it is important to recognize the central role that FCCA plays in connecting Caribbean ports and destinations and cruise lines executives. As a cruise line that is currently growing its 18 THIRD QUARTER 2019 | TRAVEL & CRUISE
“SUSTAINABLY GROWING OUR FOOTPRINT IN THE CARIBBEAN IS NOW A TOP PRIORITY FOR US.” Caribbean operations, being a member of FCCA allows us to connect easily and efficiently with many stakeholders from the countries and islands that our ships reach. In this sense, FCCA plays a pivotal role in bringing together these parties. Of course, on top of this, it is of vital importance for private operators like MSC Cruises to engage in bilateral conversations with public authorities and other local stakeholders when it comes to developing our cruise operations. Every cruise line is different and will have different needs and requirements on the ground. Ports and destinations wishing to grow their cruise business need to recognize this and be able to engage separately with each cruise line. Now for those with that access through FCCA, what would help them in driving productive one-on-one meetings or ‘elevator pitches’ at events? Beyond joining FCCA, which can clearly help establish connections with cruise line executives, it is important for ports and destinations to be properly represented at the different cruise conferences and events held across the region, as these can provide a cost-effective way for them to engage with different cruise lines.
Why do some destinations or stakeholders succeed where others fail? Is there a secret for success in working with cruise lines, or is it simply the real estate doctrine of ‘location, location, location?’ Although I believe location plays a very big role, I think even more that it is the experience as a whole that creates the wow factor. It is key that the destination works collaboratively with the cruise line to create unique guest experiences. This memorable destination experience can then mean guests choosing to return to the cruise line that helped bring them to that destination or, alternatively, guests choosing to take a land vacation and return to the destination where they enjoyed their time in port. What I think creates this wow factor is the diversity of offerings and keeping up with the market trends. A good example is the MSC Cruises private island in the making, Ocean Cay MSC Marine Reserve. We have received an incredible amount of positive feedback for our involvement with eco-friendly implementations. Besides the fact that we care a great deal about sustainable tourism ourselves, our guests enjoy being involved in these projects and doing good for the planet. We need to keep evolving to offer an attractive product to our guests, and to do that, we need to keep listening to our guests and continuously go back and analyze the market and all elements that we offer. Only then can we further improve what we already have or change certain parts that don’t work as well. Ultimately, only in this way are we able to create a business model interesting enough for guests to explore, enabling the success for both cruise lines and destinations to keep growing.
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Let’s Get Technical
FCCA Forms New Employment Counsel
ost throughout the cruise industry are already well-read on the record order book, so the hundreds of thousands of additional berths—which will accommodate tens of millions more annual cruise guests—should come as no surprise. Even the groundbreaking onboard offerings ranging from go-karts and rollercoasters to test kitchens and entertainment programs rivaling Broadway have lost some of their starry luster to seasoned industry veterans. Yet excitement abounds in every corner of the industry when discussing the unsung heroes of these new ships and onboard experiences: crew members. “Happy crew equals happy guests,” according to Jan Swartz, group president of Princess Cruises and Carnival Australia, which is why the Ocean Medallion platform is empowering crewmembers to do their jobs better and easier, helping provide both more fulfillment and a better guest experience—such as providing a bartender with information to know a guest’s favorite drink so it feels like a local bar. “I think that’s what makes cruising so unique in the travel industry,” said Christine Duffy, president of Carnival Cruise Line. “When was the last time you stayed at a resort and at the end of your stay, you hug and exchange numbers with the waiter? “For them, serving others and creating and delivering a memorable great vacation experience, getting to know a family each and every week, brings them joy,” she continued and pointed to not just the global presence of crewmembers— such as Princess’ crewmembers hailing from over 80 countries around the world— but also a multi-generational one. “There’s a lot of word of mouth, generations of families that have worked on our ships.” This is certainly understandable, as shipboard employment offers what Swartz called “a fantastic way to earn a living and a fantastic way to see the world – we think we have an incredibly valuable proposition for them.”
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In addition to their salary, crewmembers typically receive free medical care, room and board, meals, and many other benefits. Crewmembers are very satisfied with their jobs and the opportunities for career advancement, which explains why employee retention rates in the cruise industry are upwards of 80 percent. Considering this win-win relationship, many around the industry are focusing on different numbers in the record book, such as the 25,000 new crewmembers Carnival Corporation is hiring over the next few years; more than 10,000 new crewmembers, hired from more than 100,000 applications, recently added by Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. (RCCL) to support its new ship launches; and over 5,000 crewmembers needed for Norwegian Cruise Lines Holdings’ ships delivered in 2018 and set for 2019. For Florida-Caribbean Cruise Association (FCCA), there is also reason for excitement. Extending the Association’s strides in working with governments to implement and reform laws to open employment opportunities for seafarers—
“…THE COUNSEL IS MADE UP OF TALENTED PROFESSIONALS THAT ARE COMMITTED TO ASSISTING MEMBER COUNTRIES WITH THEIR QUESTIONS AND CONCERNS REGARDING CRUISE SHIP EMPLOYMENT…” —LIZA VOTICKY, DIRECTOR, GLOBAL TALENT ATTRACTION, ROYAL CARIBBEAN CRUISES LTD., & CHAIR, FCCA EMPLOYMENT COUNSEL
including El Salvador enacting legislation for cruise lines to hire from their country—FCCA and its Member Lines have taken another step in working with destinations to improve hiring possibilities. “I am pleased to share with you that the FCCA has created a new advisory committee to its portfolio, the Employment Counsel,” said Liza Voticky, director of global talent attraction of RCCL and newly elected chair of the counsel. “While still brand new, the counsel is made up of talented professionals that are committed to assisting member countries with their questions and concerns regarding cruise ship employment for their constituents.” At the time of publication, many of the details and deliverables were being galvanized, but those reading at the FCCA Cruise Conference & Trade Show will already see the Counsel—which, as Voticky pointed out, “includes members from all major cruise lines”—in action, with the employment initiative being one of the top subjects at the Conference and included in such keynote events as the Heads of Government Forum attended by FCCA Member Line presidents and CEOs as well as destination ministers and government officials. FCCA EMPLOYMENT COUNSEL MEMBERS Liza Voticky (Chair) Director, Global Talent Attraction, Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. Valentina Basso Crew Development Manager, MSC Cruises USA Candace Boggan Talent Market Strategist, Disney Cruise Line Mariano Celano Director, Shipboard Talent Acquisition, Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd. Ashley Spencer Senior Manager, Recruiting, Carnival Cruise Line
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Let’s Get Technical
IMO Environment Update By Glenn Burnett, Senior Technical Advisor, Maritime Policy, Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA)
he International Maritime Organization (IMO) is the specialized agency of the United Nations responsible for regulating shipping. The IMO’s Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC) is one of the primary committees in which IMO Member States work with non-governmental organizations, including CLIA, to develop international regulations and guidelines for the control and prevention of pollution from ships. In recent years MEPC has adopted a number of environmental measures that CLIA has supported and helped to develop. The IMO adopted the Initial IMO Strateg y on Reduction of GHG Emissions from Ships in 2018, which established definitive levels of ambition for the maritime industry. These levels of ambition put the maritime industry on a pathway to reducing annual GHG emissions consistent with the Paris Agreement temperature goals by reduction the total annual GHG emissions by at least 50% by 2050 as compared to 2008, while pursuing efforts towards phasing them out entirely this century. Cruise line members of CLIA have specifically committed to a first major step in support of the IMO Strategy by agreeing to reduce the carbon intensity, or rate of CO2 emissions, by at least 40% by 2030 as compared to 2008. CLIA members are actively making their fleets more energy efficient through operational practices, retrofits of equipment on existing ships, and installation of energy efficient technologies and practices on newbuild vessels. Cruise lines are pursuing efforts to address air pollution in addition to improving energy efficiency. Over 60% of the fleet of CLIA’s oceangoing ships are fitted with exhaust gas cleaning systems (EGCS) which remove 99% of sulfur and over 50% of particulate matter from a ship’s exhaust gas. Multiple newbuild vessels are built to use liquified natural gas (LNG) as fuel. LNG represents a 99.9% reduction of SOX emissions, a 95% reduction of NOX emissions, and potentially a 20% reduction in CO2 emissions compared to typical fuel oil. These efforts show how dedicated cruise 22 THIRD QUARTER 2019 | TRAVEL & CRUISE
lines are to meeting and exceeding international environmental requirements. Cruise lines are also leaders in shipboard waste management measures. The IMO Action Plan to Address Marine Plastic Litter from Ships was adopted in 2018 to formalize efforts to reduce the production of marine plastic litter by the maritime industry. The Action Plan includes efforts to reduce plastic litter generated from fishing vessels, review garbage record-keeping to ensure litter stay onboard, and improve port reception facilities for ships to utilize. Cruise lines are already taking steps to reduce
“…A FIRST MAJOR STEP IN SUPPORT OF THE IMO STRATEGY…” the amount of plastic litter onboard with efforts, such as reducing single-use plastics, banning plastic straws, and optimizing recycling methods. The cruise industry is continually working to make ships more efficient and environmentally sustainable. CLIA’s participation at the IMO denotes how seriously our industry treats environmental matters. CLIA looks forward to working with IMO Member States to establish meaningful and realistic goals, regulations and guidance for the maritime industry.
Let’s Get Technical
Cruise Industry and the City of Dubrovnik Partner for Innovative Destination Stewardship
LIA recently signed an agreement with the City of Dubrovnik to preserve and protect its cultural heritage through responsible tourism in the Adriatic region and beyond. The memorandum of understanding (MOU) was signed by CLIA President & CEO Kelly Craighead and City of Dubrovnik Mayor Mato Frankić to help establish Dubrovnik as a model of sustainable tourism. It focuses on investment, collaboration and best practices for long-term destination management to the benefit of residents and visitors alike. Planned actions include: engaging key stakeholders through establishing a dedicated working group; collaborating on a destination stewardship roadmap for the city based on UN sustainable tourism criteria; implementing the previously developed 2020 cruise berthing policy; and developing a ‘Respect the City’ visitor education campaign. 24 THIRD QUARTER 2019 | TRAVEL & CRUISE
“This agreement validates the work we have already done with Mayor Franković and formalizes the cruise industry’s continued commitment to the City of Dubrovnik and its people,” said Craighead. “Signing the MOU is an important step in developing innovative practices in sustainable tourism management with Mayor Franković and the city of Dubrovnik. We look forward to sharing specific action plans and our progress as we work together with the city and other tourism partners to support responsible tourism in this great city.” Mayor Franković added: “We have developed an open and trustworthy relationship with CLIA and its members over the last two years. This commitment is just a beginning of a joint systematic, integrated and participative approach that will target some of the most important tourism issues locally and globally.”
“Dubrovnik is first and foremost our home. We want to welcome guests and share our amazing home in a way that protects and preserves it. We hope this pioneering cooperation agreement will show the way to all relevant stakeholders including other destinations to work together to make our tourism and communities more sustainable, and our local people and our guests more satisfied.” Randy Durband, CEO of the Global Sustainable Tourism Council (GSTC), praised the agreement saying, “GSTC applauds the City of Dubrovnik and CLIA for creating collaborative mechanisms to better manage the resident and visitor experience in Dubrovnik, applying GSTC’s standard for responsible destination management. Public-private partnerships like this are essential to ensuring the commitments and resources necessary for destination stewardship.”
Meetings & Events
Key Cruise Executives and Industry Stakeholders Conjure Business and Fun in ‘Maagical’ St. Maarten
group of 200 FCCA Platinum Members, along with their colleagues and even family members, shuffled with more than 20 executives from FCCA Member Lines in ‘Maagical’ St. Maarten to conjure business and relationships at the 2019 FCCA PAMAC Conference. Taking place from June 12-15 at Sonesta Maho Beach Resort, Casino & Spa, the annual event made mutual success appear for the key cruise industry stakeholders and cruise line decision makers by animating both business and fun through an agenda ranging from meetings and site visits to tours and receptions providing a platform to discuss everything from industry trends and region-wide affairs to product promotion and member-specific topics – all while rediscovering St. Maarten and experiencing its remarkable tourism recovery firsthand.
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“The FCCA PAMAC Conference not only again fostered mutual growth for Platinum Members and Member Line executives by offering invaluable opportunities to better understand each other along with current happenings and offerings, but also displayed the growth of St. Maarten that was made possible by all throughout the community coming together to face the tragic and historic 2017 hurricane season and come back even stronger with new products and initiatives to accompany higher guest experience scores,” said Michele Paige, president of FCCA. Before the event even officially began, the focus of improvement and reinvention—along with some of the products, initiatives and the community itself—were spotlighted during a series of events planned for St. Maarten to maximize its opportunities with the
influential cruise executives who had arrived early to participate. On Tuesday, June 11, a townhall meeting, where all local tourism-related businesspersons and budding entrepreneurs were invited, took place at Port St. Maarten. Headed by Russell Benford, Russell Daya, Carlos Estrada, Albino Di Lorenzo, Michele Paige and Hon. Stuart Johnson, Minister of Tourism, Economic Affairs, Transport and Telecommunication (TEATT) of St. Maarten, the panel discussion shared a wealth of information about industry developments and how the destination can further capitalize on the cruise sector – and prompted action to and questions from the business owners and managers who are working and entrepreneurs who are considering starting a business in the cruise or land-based tourism field. The meeting was followed that
evening by a private dinner with a side of business opportunities between key local stakeholders and cruise executives. Wednesday morning served breakfast business-side up with Hon. Johnson, Members of Parliament and Port St. Maarten representatives along with more than 10 cruise executives, which was followed by a site visit to the port and then a private meeting with port and government authorities. That evening marked the official beginning of the PAMAC Conference, with the welcome reception at Roxxy Beach serving as the first of the nightly receptions where the group could cook up business and relationships while enjoying the local fare and sites, including Thursday’s function at Loterie Farm in French Saint Martin – both known for its zip line adventures and recently venturing into other leisure activities for cruise guests, such as the development of a par-three, nine-hole, state-of-the-art golf course. The business end of things rang in with the alarms on Thursday morning, when the group gathered for the long-standing PAMAC Meeting, which let members to put any topic on the table for discussion by both the audience and a panel of FCCA and Member Line executives leading the meeting: Russell Benford, Russell Daya, Carlos Estrada, Steve Moeller, Michele Paige and Ruben Perez. Additionally, Arnaldo Zanonato delivered a presentation to educate members about the Silversea brand and experience. “The PAMAC Meeting is always extremely important, as it ensures that the communications between FCCA Platinum Members and the Member Lines remain open, allows the members to articulate their challenges face-to-face with the cruise lines, whilst also providing an opportunity to learn from each other, and discuss what measures might be required by either the members in their respective destinations or by the lines to ensure that the guest experience can be improved, along with the respective destination ratings,” said Daya. Immediately following were one-onone meetings joining Platinum Members with their selection of cruise executives representing the cruise lines and departments that can benefit their business—with nearly 20 of the executives
pre-scheduling meetings—by providing everything from individualized input to potential deals. “The one-on-one meetings allow for us to address the specific concerns or learn about new products from Platinum Members,” said Matthew Sams, vice president, Caribbean relations and private islands, Holland America Group. “This is an important tool for both the members and the cruise industry. For us, we frequently learn about new developments and products, and we are able to help finetune them to best fit the cruise lines. For the members, it gives them a real vantage point in knowing what the lines are looking for and how to appeal to them.”
“…A COMPETITIVE ADVANTAGE AND A FOOT IN THE CRUISE INDUSTRY’S DOOR.” —MICKY ARISON, CHAIRMAN, CARNIVAL CORPORATION & FCCA
Throughout the event, more informal meetings took place while the group experienced the destination’s remarkable tourism recovery following the historic 2017 storms on a host of tours showcasing new and renewed attractions, including a ride on the steepest zipline in the world and “Innovative Shorex of the Year” Seatrade Cruise Award winner in 2018—The Flying Dutchman—at the Rockland Estate ecopark, which opened in April 2018 through financing by Carnival Corporation and building by Rainforest Adventures. Besides the thrilling experiences and vantage points, the tours literally put Platinum Members head-to-head with executives—such as racing authentic America’s Cup race yachts at the St. Maarten 12 Metre Regatta—to give a vantage point just as enthralling, one providing unique opportunities to develop business and relationships in a fun and engaging environment. The tours also gave the group front row seats to some of the reasons why the THIRD QUARTER 2019 | TRAVEL & CRUISE 27
Meetings & Events destination posted a 9.3/10 for cruise guest destination experience in April 2019, even higher than pre-hurricane levels, along with witnessing the results of new initiatives like Aquila’s Frontline Training Program in May 2019, where 461 locals throughout the hospitality sector were equipped with the education and desire to exceed guest expectations, as well as other initiatives including direct work with Member Lines, such as information sharing that laid the foundation for enhancements of the shopping experience—with future plans for onboard sales personnel to help drive guests to Front and Back Streets—and meetings regarding ongoing port improvements to increase demand.
Attending FCCA Member Line Executives Carnival Corporation David Candib, Vice President of Development and Operations, and Marie McKenzie, Vice President of Global Ports and Caribbean Government Relations; Carnival Cruise Line Carlos Estrada, Director of Commercial Home Port Operations, Nasim Ghannadian, Manager of Product Development and Marketing, Ugo Savino, Manager of Fleet Deployment and Commercial Planning, Fred Stein, Vice President of Revenue Planning and Fleet Deployment, and Leon Sutcliffe, Director of Port Operations and Government Relations; Costa Cruise Lines North America Ruben Perez, General Manager and Senior Vice President; Disney Cruise Line Ralph Dahlgren, Manager of Port Operations and Development, and Russell Daya, Executive Director of Marine and Port Operations, Port Development and Itinerary Planning; Holland America Group Lisa Banner, Manager of Shore Excursions;
“…AN IMPORTANT TOOL FOR BOTH THE MEMBERS AND THE CRUISE INDUSTRY.” —MATTHEW SAMS, VICE PRESIDENT, CARIBBEAN RELATIONS & PRIVATE ISLANDS, HOLLAND AMERICA GROUP
Plus, many of the tours gave an authentic taste of the destination’s culture and heritage, which have become increasingly important to guests—from the Emilio Wilson Museum’s glimpse of the destination’s past to the Toppers Rhum Distillery’s “World’s Best Tasting Rhum” handmade in St. Maarten, and all of Friday’s tours ending at Rockland Estate for a cultural presentation—as well as some of the destination’s preservation efforts through The WasteFactory, a one-stop shop for information, advice, education, collaboration, instruction, creation and sales of environmentally friendly products. In all, the FCCA PAMAC Conference again exemplified why FCCA coordinates exclusive events like these throughout the year for Platinum Members to meet with high-level executives from FCCA Member Lines in order for both parties to stay at the forefront of information, while remaining in constant 28 THIRD QUARTER 2019 | TRAVEL & CRUISE
MSC Cruises USA Albino Di Lorenzo, Vice President of Operations, and Paolo Mezzino, Port Operations Coordinator; Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Christine Manjencic, Vice President of Destination Services, Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings, Steve Moeller, Senior Vice President of Commercial Development, and Jose Negron Vice President of Strategic Port Development; Royal Caribbean Cruises Russell Benford, Vice President of Government Relations, Jaime Castillo, Director of Worldwide Operations; Federico Gonzalez, Vice President of Destination Development for Latin America and the Caribbean, Miguel Reyna, Associate Vice President of Commercial Development, and Penny Zeilman, Product Development Manager of Global Tour Operations; Silversea Arnaldo Zanonato, Director of Regional Experiences Development.
contact and developing bilateral relationships that lead to success for all. “FCCA Platinum events bring together Platinum Members with some of the most important decision makers in the cruise industry,” said Micky Arison, chairman of Carnival Corporation and FCCA. “By discussing pertinent operational matters and forging invaluable business relationships, Platinum Members gain a competitive advantage and a foot in the cruise industry’s door.”
Central America on Cruise Lines’ Radars with Event to Help Build Mutual Understanding and Success
entral American destinations and stakeholders were on the cruise map from May 22-23, when more than 250 from throughout the region gathered with nearly 20 high-level executives from FCCA Member Lines for the FCCA Central America Cruise Summit. Taking place at the Costa Rica Convention Center, the event hosted by Costa Rica and organized by FCCA offered the opportunity to develop understanding, relationships and business through a series of meetings, workshops and networking functions. “The FCCA Central America Summit provided a platform for regional destinations and stakeholders to meet with and learn from key cruise industry decision makers,” said Micky Arison, chairman of Carnival Corporation and
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FCCA. “These kinds of interactions help instill the necessary operational knowledge and business relationships to drive improvements for all.” After a series of one-on-one meetings, where attendees could give a pitch and receive everything from individualized input to business opportunities from pre-selected cruise executives, FCCA President Michele Paige along with representatives from Costa Rica’s private and public sectors—including Minister of Tourism Maria Amalia Revelo—officially opened the event during a welcome reception. Addressing the audience of stakeholders and executives, Paige indicated how quickly the industry is growing, with 30 million guests expected this year and more en route from the over 70 cruise vessels with more than 240,000 lower berths on order
from FCCA Member Lines, along with the industry’s current significance to the region through $425.7 million in total cruise tourism expenditures—in addition to 10,756 jobs paying $58.04 million in wages—during the 2017-18 cruise season in the seven Central American destinations (Colombia, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua and Panama) participating in the 2018 Business Research & Economic Advisors (BREA) study, “Economic Contribution of Cruise Tourism to the Destination Economies.” She also touched on the potential of both the region and industry, the latter with only 2 percent of the population having cruised and destinations like Orlando with more than double the visitors as cruisers expected this year. Considering cruising’s growth as a mainstream—and
Meetings & Events
global—option, she focused on the bright horizon for the industry and what this could mean for the region. However, she shared that the industry’s record success has only been possible through cruise lines’ highly differentiated approach and the ability to adapt to and fulfill constantly changing wants and needs – and to compete against the rising global options, she encouraged the regional stakeholders to have a similar approach in understanding what the diverse guests want and finding the best way to deliver that. “That is why the industry is here today: to learn from each other and grow together,” she told and pointed to other symbols of the industry’s commitment to the region, including FCCA Member Lines investing hundreds of millions of dollars in the region through projects like Norwegian Cruise Line’s Harvest Caye in Belize and Carnival Corporation’s Mahogany Bay in Honduras and Amber Cove in Dominican Republic – along with continued support through social
projects, infrastructure developments and initiatives to improve security and the guest experience. She also commended the initiatives and partnership by destinations and stakeholders throughout the region, with every tourism board, many port authorities and local municipalities, and key tour operators participating in the FCCA Platinum Membership program, as well as numerous governments engaging in initiatives to maximize the mutual benefits of cruise tourism, including taking key steps to implement and reform laws to open employment opportunities for seafarers. “It is clear that this mutual success is important to all of us here,” she continued and highlighted the schedule loaded with opportunities for that mutual success through another round of one-on-one meetings as well as two workshops and a closing reception.
“THAT IS WHY THE INDUSTRY IS HERE TODAY: TO LEARN FROM EACH OTHER AND GROW TOGETHER.” —MMICHELE PAIGE, PRESIDENT, FCCA
Led by some of the attending cruise executives, along with knowledgeable private and public sector experts, the workshops focused on key elements to foster long-term mutual success between cruise lines and destination stakeholders, while
also addressing specific regional operations and improving general business with the cruise industry. “Building Your Destination: What It Take to Be a Destination of Choice” approached everything from cruise line and guest wants and needs to demand generation and tour operations. Moderated by Russell Daya, Executive Director, Maritime & Port Operations & Itinerary Planning, Disney Cruise Line, panelists included Jaimie Castillo, Director, Worldwide Port Operations, Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd.; Jennifer Marmanillo, Director, Itinerary Planning, Norwegian Cruise Line; Claudine Pohl, International Business Development Manager and Trainer, Aquila’s Center for Cruise Excellence, FCCA’s official training partner; Leon Sutcliffe, Director, Port Operations & Government Relations, Carnival Cruise Line; and Christopher Szel, Shore Excursion Manager, TUI Cruises. “Seafarers’ Employment & Procurement Opportunities” touched on ways destinations can help fill the industry’s current fleet and order book with crewmembers and supplies, from the available positions along with training and legislation that can open opportunities, to purchasing procedures and demands that can help local suppliers stock up on business with cruise lines. Moderated by Adam Ceserano, Senior Vice President, FCCA, panelists included Hugo Aparicio, Seafarer’s Placement Coordinator for El Salvador Maritime & Port Authority; Federico Gonzalez, Vice President, Destination Development, Latin America & Caribbean, Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd.; Vina Jumpp, Director, Procurement Food & Beverage North America, Export US, Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd.; Jose Negron, Vice President, Strategic Port Development, Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd.; and Emilio Silvestri, Minister of Tourism of Honduras.
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Curaçao top-rated port in the Southern Caribbean
Cruise terminal facilities and port services
CURAÇAO PORTS A U T H O R I T Y
The cruise port of Curaçao, located in the Southern Caribbean, ranked number one on Cruise Critic's list for the southern Caribbean region, with a ﬁve out of ﬁve Cruise Critic editor rating. Popular excursions at Curacao, include a private beach break excursion, world class diving and outdoor adventures. The colorful downtown shopping area with its beautiful UNESCO World Heritage historic buildings.
Werf de Wilde - P.O. Box: 689 Curaçao, Dutch Caribbean
The recently completed Willemstad cruise infrastructure expansion enables the port to welcome the latest generation of cruise vessels. Our cruise terminals oﬀer many amenities for the convenience of our visitors, ensuring an enjoyable experience. With modern infrastructure and the experienced port cluster, the ports of Curaçao oﬀer maritime and logistical service excellence for all type of cruise vessels.
Port services include:
Tel: (+599-9) 434-5999 Telefax: (+599-9) 461-3907
Nautical assistance Cargo & supplies Salvage Bunkering and provisions Surveys Underwater services Ship repair and maintenance Transport Fresh water delivery Waste Management
Email: email@example.com Website: www.curports.com
Building towards the Future
Meetings & Events
CLIA Conference 2019
ay marked the annual CLIA Conference, which took place across three days in Southampton and Portsmouth. Delegates enjoyed ship visits on Celebrity Edge, / MSC Preziosa and Queen Mary 2; were treated to spectacular entertainment courtesy of Cunard; were the audience for ‘The Voice of the Ocean’ hosted by Princess Cruises; listened to and learned from insightful speakers both in and outside the cruise industry; and had a surprise visit from the one and only Sir Richard Branson. Delegates on Celebrity Edge heard from Lisa Lutoff-Perlo, Celebrity Cruises’ president and CEO. Lisa used her time on stage to make the point to travel agents that high volume of sales will mean either Celebrity Edge or Apex will homeport in Southampton in the future – with more details to follow this autumn whether Celebrity Cruises will announce an Edge series out of Southampton.
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Delegates on MSC Preziosa heard from Antonio Paradiso, MSC Cruises’ managing director UK & Ireland. Antonio spoke about MSC Bellissima, which recently launched in Southampton, and said an ‘enhanced’ MSC ship will be homeported in Southampton for the 2021 season. The next day, over 700 delegates headed from Southampton to Portsmouth Guildhall for the full-day conference, which was kicked off with Andy Harmer and Lucy Huxley coming on stage in Star Trek uniforms. This, of course, was because the theme for this year’s Conference was #NextGeneration – an in depth look at what’s on the horizon for the cruise industry and how travel agents can appeal to the next generation of cruisers. Tony Roberts, vice president for Princess Cruises UK & Europe and CLIA Chair, took the stage to speak to delegates about the cruise industry and stated that with 2018 being a record-breaking year for the UK & Ireland cruise market, sur-
passing 2 million cruises for the first time, the outlook is very positive. Tony said that while there may be difficulties and challenges ahead with consumer confidence due to Brexit, the cruise market is thriving – highlighted by the industry committing to invest $61 billion in building new ships. Before being joined on stage by Sir Richard Branson, Virgin Voyages’ CEO Tom McAlpin revealed to the audience some exciting news: Scarlet Lady, the line’s first ship, will be coming to the UK. Sir Richard Branson discussed Virgin Voyages’ entry to the cruising market, while giving delegates insight into some of his other business ventures, including Virgin Galactic. CLIA President and CEO Kelly Craighead then addressed UK delegates for the first time since joining the team in January. Kelly spoke about what the cruise industry is doing in terms of sustainability and protecting local infrastructure. Craighead was followed by Larry Pimental, Azamara’s president and CEO,
who discussed how education and knowledge are the real key for success, stating it is not just about launching new ships, but about being aware of the products on offer. “We cruise to see the land,” he said, which is something that should be remembered when selling cruises, which are more than about just the ship, but the entire experience. In the evening, delegates enjoyed a gala dinner complete with a performance from the three finalists for ‘The Voice of the Ocean,’ hosted by Princess Cruises. Travel agent Kat Vaughan was crowned the winner after singing ‘Never Enough’ from musical The Greatest Showman. The final day of the CLIA Conference took place onboard Queen Mary 2. After a fabulous show from Cunard performers, delegates heard from Ellen Bettridge, CEO and president of Uniworld Boutique River Cruises, who spoke about the #NextGeneration of river cruisers. Bettridge discussed how customers and
their changing expectations mean that travel agents should have a strong focus on the experiences both on and off the ship when selling this type of cruise.
“WE CRUISE TO SEE THE LAND.” —LARRY PIMENTAL, PRESIDENT & CEO, AZAMARA
Expedition leader, author and scientist Felicity Aston then took the stage, courtesy of Silversea, to tell her fascinating and awe-inspiring story of when she took on the challenge to be the first and only woman in the world to ski across Antarctica alone. The 1744km, 59-day
journey completed in January 2012 also made Felicity the first person in the world to traverse the continent purely by muscle power without the aid of kites or machines. Felicity spoke of the extreme conditions and said that even though she felt like she wanted to give up every day, each morning she told herself to “ just get out of the tent,” this was the motivation that got her through the incredibly difficult challenge and is something we should all remind ourselves when the going gets tough. The CLIA Conference 2019 was a record-breaking year, with over 700 delegates in attendance – the highest number since the Conference began 13 years ago. It was also arguably the best one yet, as stated by many of those who have attended for years. Thank you to everyone who joined us and our incredible sponsors for making the Conference 2019 one that will go down in history. We look forward to seeing you all again next year!
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Meetings & Events
CLIA LIVE Series Tours Australia and New Zealand
undreds of travel agents across Australia and New Zealand have joined an expanded CLIA LIVE program this year, taking up education opportunities on tour across both countries. The initiative returned in 2019 after an inaugural series introduced last year. Created by Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) Australasia, it involves a series of two-day workshops designed to give agents a better understanding of key brands and the cruises they offer. CLIA Australasia Managing Director Joel Katz said the CLIA LIVE format gave travel agents a rare opportunity to learn from multiple cruise lines all in the one location. “Rather than having to join multiple events or travel interstate, agents have been able to develop a better understanding of the various cruise lines in their own city. It has proven particularly popular in regions where agents sometimes don’t get the same training opportunities as those in the larger cities.” After events in four locations last year, the program has been increased to six in 2019. So far CLIA has hosted events in the Australian cities of Perth, Adelaide, Sydney and Brisbane, as well as in the New Zealand city of Auckland. A final event is scheduled in Melbourne in September. With most events booked out, the CLIA LIVE series will have welcomed
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more than 600 participants across both countries by the time it wraps up for 2019 – well above the 370 hosted in the inaugural series last year. CLIA Australasia’s Membership & Events Manager Marita Nosic said this year’s series had been themed around matching clients to the brands that suit them best. “We’ve had presenters from many of the world’s biggest ocean, river and expedition cruise lines, and the content has been tailored to give travel agents a better understanding of the style and character of each line, allowing them to better meet their clients’ tastes,” she said.
“…AGENTS HAVE BEEN ABLE TO DEVELOP A BETTER UNDERSTANDING OF THE VARIOUS CRUISE LINES IN THEIR OWN CITY.”
Other education initiatives from CLIA Australasia this year include the region’s annual Masters Conference, which will take place aboard Princess Cruises’ Ruby Princess in November. The Master’s Conference gives CLIA travel agents who have achieved Ambassador status the chance to advance their sales and marketing skills in a seminar setting, while also experiencing a CLIA cruise line member vessel first-hand. US-based sales guru and motivator Scott Koepf will return to oversee CLIA Australasia’s 22nd Masters, taking participants through a series of topics from hands-on sales skills to understanding marketing, mastering customer service and even life planning. The event aims to create a forum in which agents can advance their professional development and hone their skills in sales and marketing, giving them practical insight and motivation to help them remain at the top of their game. The six-day cruise will depart from Sydney and visit the island state of Tasmania. After completing the Masters course and a comprehensive work-based assignment, agents will receive 100 accreditation points and enter the prestigious CLIA Cruise Masters ranks with perks including a higher search ranking on the CLIA Australasia website.
CO LO M BI A. TR AV EL
Celebrity Flora Makes a Mark with a Small Footprint In a game-changing moment two years in the making, Celebrity Cruises officially launched the revolutionary new Celebrity Flora, a 100-guest, allsuites mega yacht poised to connect travelers to the Galapagos Islands like never before. The ship was welcomed to the brand’s award-winning fleet with a sustainability-focused ceremony where executives, valued travel advisers and journalists joined the ship’s Godmother, environmental advocate and former World Wildlife Fund International President Yolanda Kakabadse, in blessing the ship. “Our guests have never seen a destination quite like the beautiful Galapagos Islands, and the islands have never seen a ship quite like Celebrity Flora, perfectly blending intimate luxury with sustainability,” said Lisa Lutoff-Perlo, President and CEO, Celebrity Cruises. “The ship is designed to showcase this amazing destination, giving our guests incredible memories — and underscoring the critical importance of protecting our planet’s fragile ecosystems.” Lutoff-Perlo, as well as Kakabadse, delivered passionate remarks about the ship’s sustainability, cutting-edge design, and the brand’s commitment to this awe-inspiring region. In a unique nod to these themes, the traditional bottle-breaking was triggered by a ceremonial ribbon-cutting that used a hand-crafted ribbon made from green banana core and crafted by a collective of local female artisans known as Manos Magicas. In addi-
tion, the Ecuadorian national anthem was sung by two schoolchildren from Ecuador. “Being here in the beautiful Galapagos Islands on board Celebrity Flora has reminded me of one of my favorite quotes by Charles Darwin: ‘In the long history of humankind those who learned to collaborate and improvise most effectively have prevailed,’” said Kakabadse. “Darwin was right; this is the time to collaborate with all sectors of society, and permanently innovate to seek new ways to address development challenges. Tourism can be at the center, and Celebrity Flora is at the forefront.” During the event, a partnership was revealed with EarthEcho International, a nonprofit organization founded by Philippe Cousteau. Jr., to inspire young people to act now for a sustainable future. Celebrity and the team at the non-profit will work together to introduce a comprehensive and customized youth strategy designed to empower a new generation of environmental advocates both in the local communities of the Galapagos, as well as aboard Celebrity Flora and Celebrity Xpedition in the region. Lutoff-Perlo added: “We want to leave a destination in a better place than when we found it, and we work with partners who share this mission, so joining with EarthEcho International and Philippe is the perfect partnership for us, especially as we both passionately believe that the next generation is critically important to the future of our planet.”
Photo by @ninetofivecruisers [IG]
ROYAL CARIBBEAN FLEET EXPANSION CRUISES TO CLEAN-ENERGY FUTURE Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. has entered into an agreement with shipbuilder Meyer Turku to order a third Icon-class ship for delivery in 2025. The ship will join its two sister ships—to be delivered in 2022 and 2024—in Royal Caribbean International’s fleet. “We are thrilled to announce the newest addition to our Icon-class fleet that affirms our commitment to clean-power technologies at sea,” said Richard Fain, Chairman and CEO, Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. “We’ve designed a class of ships powered by liquefied natural gas that leverages the latest, environmentally-friendly applications. We believe that innovative shipbuilding can reduce our carbon footprint and boost energy efficiencies to help to build a cleaner future.”
Photo by @leleninety4 [IG]
COSTA CRUISES TAKES ANOTHER STEP IN ITS SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT PLAN Costa Cruises celebrated the first steel-cutting for Costa Toscana at the Meyer Turku shipyard in Finland on July 30. Costa Toscana is the second of two new sister ships ordered by Costa Cruises that can be powered in port and at sea by 38 THIRD QUARTER 2019 | TRAVEL & CRUISE
On Board liquefied natural gas (LNG), the world’s cleanest burning fossil fuel. The first of these, Costa Smeralda, is nearing completion at the Meyer Turku shipyard and will enter service in October, followed by Costa Toscana, which is expected to be delivered in 2021. In total, following AIDAnova’s launch at the end of 2018 as the world’s first cruise vessel to be powered at sea and in port by LNG, Carnival Corporation has an additional 10 next-generation “green” cruise ships on order, with expected delivery dates between 2019 and 2025.
The introduction of LNG to power cruise ships is a ground-breaking innovation that supports the company’s environmental goals with the virtual total elimination of sulfur dioxide emissions (zero emissions) and particulate matter (95 to 100% reduction). The use of LNG will also substantially reduce emissions of nitrogen oxides and carbon dioxide. The gas will be stored in special tanks on board and will be used to generate the energy required for navigation and onboard services, thanks to dual-fuel hybrid engines. “The steel-cutting ceremony for Costa Toscana is another step forward in our
sustainable development plan,” said Neil Palomba, president of Costa Cruises. “LNG propulsion for cruise ships is a major innovation, pioneering a new era in the use of low-carbon fuels that will significantly reduce exhaust emissions to help protect the environment without compromising on safety, in line with our top priorities.” With gross tonnage of over 180,000 and more than 2,600 staterooms on each ship, Costa Smeralda and Costa Toscana are part of the Costa Group’s fleet expansion plan that includes a total of seven new ships scheduled to enter service by 2023.
Countdown for MSC Grandiosa The countdown is on for the launch of MSC Cruises’ first Meraviglia-Plus ship, MSC Grandiosa, in Hamburg, Germany on November 9th with TV star Michelle Hunziker hosting the glamorous events. MSC Cruises developed the Meraviglia generation ships to meet every need of today’s cruise guest. MSC Grandiosa will become MSC Cruises’ new flagship and the largest ship in the fleet, offers the brand’s richest array of facilities and services to date. With 11 dining venues, 21 bars and lounges, world-class entertainment, an authentic Mediterranean-style promenade at the heart of the ship and much more, MSC Grandiosa is the ideal ship for any guest. Highlights include:
A Ship for the Environment
In line with MSC Cruises environmental stewardship program founded
on a deep commitment to ecological principles, MSC Grandiosa pushes the boundaries of cruise ship environmental performance, featuring some of the latest environmental systems and innovative marine technology. The ship operates with significantly increased energy efficiency and is equipped with state-of-the-art recycling facilities and waste management systems, as well as advanced technology for cleaner ship emissions.
MSC for Me and ZOE
After debuting on MSC Bellissima earlier this year, ZOE, developed in partnership with HARMAN international and Samsung Electronics, is MSC Cruises’ industry-leading voice-enabled artificial intelligence (AI) that will be found in every cabin on MSC Grandiosa as part of the MSC for Me digital ecosystem. Speaking seven
languages, she can answer hundreds of questions about the cruise and give information about onboard facilities, help book services and provide guidance and suggestions. In addition to ZOE, guests will be able to take advantage of a number of other new MSC for Me features introduced in 2019 including guest-to-guest chat via the MSC for Me app, Friends and Family Locator service*, and to begin planning before they board, guests can browse and purchase pre-paid packages at the best prices.
New Cirque du Soleil at Sea Shows
MSC Grandiosa will be the third MSC Cruises ship to feature Cirque du Soleil at Sea, with two new shows designed exclusively for MSC Cruises guests, and only available on MSC Grandiosa.
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On Board SEABOURN’S EXPEDITION SHIPS BRINGING TRAVELERS TO NEW DEPTHS Seabourn is preparing to take travelers into new depths with custom submarines that will operate excursions from the line’s two upcoming ultra-luxury purpose-built expedition ships. Both Seabourn Venture and her yet-to-be-named sister ship will sail to the far corners of the Earth carrying two U-Boat Worx Cruise Sub 7 subs designed specifically for Seabourn for guests to journey up to 300 meters beneath the surface to explore sunken wrecks, reefs, and view marine wildlife in their natural habitat. Each battery-powered sub will carry six guests as well as one pilot, with guests seated in two clear acrylic spheres flanking the center pilot’s station, giving an awe-inspiring perspective of the marine world just outside thanks to undisturbed and undistorted views in virtually all directions. “The undersea world is often considered as the last great frontier on Earth, with more than 80 percent of the underwater realm remaining unmapped, unobserved, and unexplored according to the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration,” said Robin West, vice president of Expedition Operations for Seabourn. “With these subs, we’re going to take our guests to places that few have ever seen firsthand, leaving them with a perspective on the world around us that is jaw-dropping and will create stories to last a lifetime.”
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Seabourn Venture is scheduled to launch in June 2021, with a second yet-to-benamed sister ship slated to launch in May 2022. The ships are being designed from conception for expedition travel blended with ultra-luxury and personalized service by leading travel experts and seasoned professionals with great depth of experience in expedition, hospitality, and luxury cruising. Between July 2021 and April 2022, Seabourn Venture will visit a vast number of breathtaking locations and remote destinations in the Arctic and Antarctica, as well as in the Amazon, Caribbean, Central and South America and more, offering guests the unique opportunity to experience ultra-luxury expedition cruising and exhilarating adventures. The ship is scheduled to visit more than 150 unique and fascinating destinations across the globe—many of which few travelers have ever been—and over 65 new or notable destinations with a multitude of new and compelling expedition experiences. Both ships will be designed and built for diverse environments to PC6 Polar Class standards and will include a plethora of modern hardware and technology that will extend the ships global deployment and capabilities. The ships will also be designed to carry a number of kayaks and 24 Zodiacs that can accommodate all onboard guests at once, which will allow for a truly immersive experience. Each ship will feature 132 luxurious oceanfront veranda suites.
NEW EXPERIENCES FOR PRINCESS’ NEWBUILDS From traveling through space and time solving mysteries to a cool new way to boogie while celebrating the iconic sounds, culture and history of jazz, Princess Cruises’ newest ships— Sky Princess (October 2019) and Enchanted Princess ( June 2020)—have plenty of at-sea firsts in store for cruise guests, including a first-of-its-kind escape room experience, Phantom Bridge, and the only jazz theater at sea, Take 5. On the Phantom Bridge, guests will face immersive environments as they race to solve puzzles and travel to endangered time periods. The entire ship will transform and respond to guests’ actions, enveloping them in the story. Using projection mapping, touch screen surfaces and hidden physical elements, Phantom Bridge brings the environment to life as players race to uncover new clues and solve puzzles that will transport them to the next endangered time period. It also blends the physical and the digital with immersive effects, such as players captaining the ship and turning the physical wheel to navigate the vessel and watch as the simulation view changes. Lighting, sound and digital features disguised as physical ones are combined to create an immersive, realistic experience, every step of the way. But players beware, as they’ll never know when a new item could mysteriously appear and be the key to the next puzzle. Families can even play together, with Phantom Bridge tailoring the experience to players of all ages, heights and physical abilities so parents, kids and grandparents can all play together. Plus, with so many levels, time periods and puzzles more than 700 different outcomes are possible, which means players can come back and engage in Phantom Bridge time and time again since it’s never the same adventure. Take 5 celebrates the iconic sounds, culture and history of jazz, with the lounge also featuring hand-crafted cocktails by
Princess partner and Master Mixologist Rob Floyd in a chic bar setting. Take 5 will offer curated experiences honoring the roots of jazz, the birth of BeBop, contemporary jazz and iconic female artists, while highlighting how destinations helped shaped this musical genre. Take 5 celebrates this important American art form with live performances by dedicated jazz musicians, dance lessons, engaging speakers and workshops, guest performers and after-hours parties. It will also feature surprise, pop-up performances so no two nights are the same. Carefully curated, custom media content will play on screens including archival footage and iconic imagery.
CURTAIN RAISED ON SEVEN SEAS SPLENDOR OFFERINGS Regent Seven Seas Cruises raised the curtain on five new theater performances that will debut on Seven Seas Splendor when the highly anticipated luxury cruise ship launches in February 2020. From a dueling battle between rock and country musical genres to a story of adventure and romance to a thriller filled with intrigue, these lavishly staged musical productions await guests. “These captivating theatrical performances on Seven Seas Splendor are unrivaled in luxury ocean cruising,” said Jason Montague, president and chief executive officer of Regent Seven Seas Cruises. “They were created and produced by our team of Broadway choreographers and directors. We recruited some of the finest, most talented musicians and performers to deliver unforgettable and engaging productions for our valued guests.” In addition, Regent also revealed details of four entertainment lounges onboard: Splendor Lounge, Observation Lounge, Meridian Lounge and the Casino. During the evening these venues will feature resident musicians and entertainers, dancing, karaoke singing, games and more.
New Orleans and Princess Tiana Take Center Stage in Disney Wonder Enhancements The world of “The Princess and the Frog” will come to life in new ways on Disney Wonder with the addition of an exciting New Orleans-themed lounge that will transport guests deeper into the heart of the city’s iconic French Quarter. A perfect complement to Tiana’s Place Restaurant on Disney Wonder, the French Quarter Lounge will feature live music and themed activities for everyone in the family. Also debuting on Disney Wonder this fall will be a sleek new space for teens and a redesigned café just for adults. The new enhancements debut on Disney Wonder’s four-night sailing from Vancouver to San Diego on September 30. These additions are part of an overall commitment by Disney Cruise Line to invest in its ships, helping to deliver
CARNIVAL PANORAMA SUCCESSFULLY COMPLETES SEA TRIALS Carnival Cruise Line’s newest ship, Carnival Panorama, successfully completed its sea trials in the Adriatic Sea in July, marking a major milestone in anticipation
incredible family vacation experiences for years to come. While making these enhancements, crews perform regularly scheduled and wide-ranging maintenance to keep the fleet in tip-top shape, further demonstrating the unwavering commitment by Disney Cruise Line to continually elevate the guest experience. Guests sailing on Disney Wonder can experience a variety of itineraries and ports of call throughout the year, including summer sailings to Alaska, cruises to the Mexican Riviera and voyages to the Caribbean and Bahamas. For the first time, Disney Wonder will also call New Orleans home in 2020 with Caribbean and Bahamian itineraries departing from this new home port beginning February 7.
of its inaugural cruise from Long Beach on December 11 becoming the line’s first new ship on the West Coast in 20 years. As the newest ship in the fleet, Carnival Panorama will offer innovations such as the first Sky Zone trampoline park at sea and a new ChooseFun WaterWorks aqua park inspired by the line’s Chief Fun Officer, NBA Hall of Famer Shaquille O’Neal, as well as popular onboard venues like Guy’s Pig & Anchor Bar-B-Que Smokehouse Brewhouse, featuring BBQ favorites created by Food Network star and longtime partner Guy Fieri and craft beers brewed on board. Carnival Panorama will also offer a variety of accommodation choices, including the tropics-inspired Havana area with colorful staterooms and its own THIRD QUARTER 2019 | TRAVEL & CRUISE 41
On Board Cuban-themed bar and pool; Family Harbor with extra-roomy staterooms and the Family Harbor Lounge; and luxurious Cloud 9 Spa staterooms with special amenities and privileges. Following an inaugural three-day voyage to Ensenada, Carnival Panorama will launch year-round seven-day Mexican Riviera cruises from Long Beach on December 14. The week-long adventures will visit spectacular seaside resort towns including Puerto Vallarta, Cabo San Lucas and Mazatlan.
SEABOURN ODYSSEY SHINES WITH EXTENSIVE DESIGN, TECHNOLOGICAL UPDATES Seabourn completed a multi-million-dollar renovation of Seabourn Odyssey in July, refreshing the look and feel of the vessel with open and airy interiors, modern technology updates, and rich contemporary furnishings that give the ship a completely fresh feel. The renovation, completed in Genoa, Italy in May, included extensive work to thoughtfully update many public and guest areas throughout the ship.
OCEANIA REMASTERS RIVIERA A host of exciting enhancements were recently completed during Riviera’s drydock in Marseille, France as part of the brand’s OceaniaNEXT program. “With the evolution of OceaniaNEXT, this was a great opportunity to not just enhance the guest experience aboard Riviera, but to elevate it through the addition of surprising new elements,” stated Bob Binder, President and CEO of Oceania Cruises. The most dramatic change is the all-new coffee bar area and addition 42 THIRD QUARTER 2019 | TRAVEL & CRUISE
of a tony new lounge with sweeping sea views on Deck 14. Riviera’s 200 Concierge and 244 Veranda staterooms along with the 124 Penthouse Suites radiate a stylish new air inspired by the better-than-new Insignia and Sirena. The proverbial jewel in the crown of
the re-mastering are the three next-generation Owner’s Suites furnished exclusively with the Ralph Lauren Home Collection. Similar enhancements will be carried out on Riviera’s sister-ship, Marina, in May 2020.
Norwegian Cruise Line Launches ‘Free the Beat’ Program Norwegian Cruise Line is dropping its ‘Free the Beat’ program, a platform where the music industry’s best songwriters, artists, talent and creators have the freedom to develop curated content for the brand’s first global music library inspired by the world’s most beautiful destinations. As part of the new initiative, the company will team up with leaders in the music industry to curate a portfolio of exclusive content that will be leveraged through multiple guest-facing channels, including on board the 16-ship fleet. From hosting exclusive songwriter cruises to releasing never-before-heard uncut tracks from world-renowned music powerhouses, such as Family Affair Productions and Warner Chappell Music, this program will deliver the brand’s first global music library. The music created will also enhance
the guest experience by bringing the cruising experience to life with destination-inspired onboard playlists. Multi-platinum recording artist and songwriter Andy Grammer will host the brand’s first songwriters cruise. Select songwriters will be invited to sail on board the recently revitalized Norwegian Joy on a seven-day voyage to Alaska from Seattle. The goal is to inspire content creation through the world-class experiences available on board and ashore within the destinations they will visit. “The place that you’re in affects the art that comes out of you,” said Andy Grammer, multi-platinum recording artist and songwriter. “In my career, I’ve been lucky enough to participate in writing trips around the world and can’t think of a cooler place than Alaska to feel inspired to create.”
“Costa App” Wins a Host of Awards
VOYAGER OF THE SEAS ADDS NEW WAVE OF THRILLS Adventures in the South Pacific will take on a whole new meaning with the highly anticipated arrival of a bolder-than-ever Voyager of the Seas this fall. Royal Caribbean International has revealed a $97 million new look with a lineup of first-to-market features for the region’s debut amplified ship. From The Perfect Storm duo of racer waterslides to the reinvigorated Vitality Spa and redesigned kids and teens spaces, Voyager will tout a thrilling combination of experiences that make for an unforgettable family vacation to far-flung destinations on the other side of the world.
SEABOURN SOJOURN PREMIERES NEW ENTERTAINMENT EXPERIENCES Guests on Seabourn Sojourn will find a lively atmosphere, as the ship has debuted new musical and theatrical performances with productions designed to amaze with cutting-edge technologies and choreography, creating an awe-inspiring onboard complement to the elevated travel experience Seabourn guests enjoy. Produced by Belinda King Creative Productions, each new production features a vibrant cast, dynamic musical arrangements, tailor-made costumes, and creative direction. In addition, Seabourn Sojourn’s Grand Salon has been recently upgraded with brand new LED screens, a redesigned stage, and updated theatrical lighting to enhance the entertainment spectacles scheduled through the summer season.
The Costa Cruises “Costa App” won the “Mediastars Prize,” the Advertising Technical Award, in the App category. This was the fifth prize won in just a few months by the app, demonstrating the great success achieved by this new digital tool that is making the onboard experience increasingly user-friendly. As part of the Advertising Technical Awards, the “Costa App” also won the “Special Star” prize awarded to Costa Cruises and Triplesense Reply for creative direction. It previously gained first place at the Interaktive Key Awards, in the Mobile Communication category, and won both the “Silver in UX, Interface and navigation 2019” and “Silver in Apps 2019” prizes at the Indigo Awards. The “Costa App”, which can be downloaded free of charge from the App Store and Google Play Store, provides a range of information about the actual cruise, both before boarding and during the trip: ports of call, times of arrival and departure of the ship, shore excursions available at every call, with full screen photos and videos that help illustrate the various offers as effectively as possible. Once guests are on board, it also allows them to view the schedule of activities planned for the cruise, book a table directly at the on-board pay restaurants, use the weather widget, chat function and even the budget con-
CUNARD LAUNCHES FLEETWIDE ARTIST IN RESIDENCE PROGRAM Luxury cruise line Cunard is elevating its art offerings with the introduction of an Artist in Residence program in partnership with Clarendon Fine Art. The program will launch on board Queen Victoria in September 2019, offering guests insight into the world of fine art. Sherree Valentine-Daines, an internationally acclaimed British artist, has been
troller. Finally, by signing in to their CostaClub profile, guests can check the points they have earned and benefits available to them on board and on land, as well as plan their future cruises. Use of the Costa Cruises App on board is free, so no payment is required for the connection needed to browse the various sections.
Photo by @cruisechannel [IG]
appointed as Cunard’s inaugural Artist in Residence. Widely celebrated as the ‘Face of Modern British Impressionism,’ Valentine-Daines will offer live painting demonstrations, hold a book signing event and unveil an original painting onboard. “We are thrilled to launch this program with one of Britain’s leading Impressionist artists, Sherree ValentineDaines,” said Josh Leibowitz, SVP of Cunard North America. “Guests will have the opportunity to meet Sherree and witness her create her craft live on board, adding a unique and fascinating new dimension to a Cunard voyage.” THIRD QUARTER 2019 | TRAVEL & CRUISE 43
SILVERSEA TO ENHANCE ELEGANCE To enrich the traveling experience for the cruise line’s guests, Silversea Cruises has collaborated with legendary lifestyle brand Lalique. Founded in 1888, Lalique is celebrated for its exquisite jewelry, decorative items, interior design, perfumes, and artworks. On both Silver Moon and Silver Shadow, the restaurants’ designs will be enriched by the installation of several handmade Lalique crystal panels. The works of art will be entirely bespoke, with each taking approximately three months to craft. CARNIVAL’S HUB APP TO INCLUDE DAY-BY-DAY SCHEDULE OF YOUTH ACTIVITIES Continuing to help families make the most of their vacations, Carnival Cruise Line updated its popular HUB App to include a comprehensive day-by-day schedule of onboard youth programming and activities with the ability to “like” favorites to receive reminders and updates. The leader in family cruising carrying more than 900,000 children each year, Carnival has created seemingly endless opportunities for kid-friendly fun from its three age-specific programs to a wide range of onboard activities and attractions. Now, as part of the app’s expanded capabilities and functionality, schedules and details for these options are available in one convenient and centralized area. 44 THIRD QUARTER 2019 | TRAVEL & CRUISE
Photo by @franciscocorreiaphotos [IG]
Photo by @jayritchig [IG]
AIDA CRUISES BRAND PRESENTS LATEST SUSTAINABILITY REPORT AIDA Cruises documented further progress on its path toward emission-neutral cruising in the latest edition of “AIDA cares.” As early as 2023, 94% of all AIDA guests will be sailing on ships that can be fully operated with low-emission liquefied natural gas (LNG) or, in port can utilize green shore power – and two more ships will follow in the steps of the groundbreaking AIDAnova, which became the first cruise ship in the world fully operated by LNG with its commissioning on December 12, 2018. AIDA Cruises is also retrofitting the ships in the existing fleet on an ongoing basis with state-of-the-art green technology. The use of LNG, shore power from renewable energy sources, the use of modern Advanced Air Quality Systems (AAQS), the reduction or complete elimination of plastic and disposable products, and the reduction of food waste on board are key issues that AIDA Cruises is tackling. “As Germany’s market leader for cruises, we accept the ecological and social challenges that we face both now and in the future, and we are taking responsibility,” said AIDA President Felix Eichhorn. “Today we are already exploring together with our partners the use of fuel cells, batteries or liquefied gas from renewable sources in the cruise industry. We are committed to both the Paris climate targets and those of the International Maritime Organization (IMO). Our long-term goal is clear: emission-neutral cruising,”
CARNIVAL CORPORATION RELEASES ANNUAL SUSTAINABILITY REPORT FOR 2018 As another example of the industry sailing to a brighter, greener future—and building steam onto its groundbreaking initiative to reduce the rate of carbon emissions across the fleet by 40% by 2030—Carnival Corporation has released its annual sustainability report for 2018. Highlights include making additional progress to the 25% carbon reduction goal, which was achieved three years ahead of schedule in 2017; introducing the world’s first cruise ship able to be powered at port and sea by LNG, the world’s cleanest-burning fossil fuel; and launching Operations Oceans Alive, a company-wide internal effort and call to action to further ensure that all employees receive proper environmental education, training and oversight, while continuing the commitment to protect the oceans, seas and destinations. Looking forward, the company is charting its sustainable journey with the United Nation’s Sustainable Development as a framework to develop a new set of goals for 2030. Carnival Corporation also announced that it will significantly eliminate its purchase and consumption of non-essential single-use plastics by the end of 2021. The effort to dramatically reduce single-use plastics across its nine global cruise line brands is part of an expansion of Operation Oceans Alive, the corporation’s program to further its ongoing commitment to achieve and sustain environmental compliance and excellence.
Photo by @costagrammer (IG)
COSTA CRUISES’ FOOD WASTE REDUCTION PROJECT Costa Cruises has put food issue at the very heart of its sustainable development strategy, focusing in particular on the objective on cutting food waste. This commitment is in line with the United Nations 2030 Agenda, with Costa focusing on Goal 12, namely responsible consumption, and on Goal 2, linked to the achievement of a socially aware food system. More specifically, Costa is striving to help achieve target 12.3 regarding the cutting of food waste, the ultimate aim being by 2030, to halve per capita global food waste at the retail and consumer levels and reduce food losses along production and supply chains.
NORWEGIAN CRUISE LINE’S THIRD ANNUAL CONSERVATION CRUISE Norwegian Cruise Line is partnering with the Guy Harvey Ocean Foundation (GHOF) and Nova Southeastern University’s (NSU) Guy Harvey Research Institute to host the third annual ocean conservation-themed cruise on Norwegian Escape this fall. Departing September 15 from New York, guests who sail on this unforgettable cruise will experience a week full of opportunities to meet Guy Harvey, world renowned marine artist, scientist, conservationist, entrepreneur and hull artist of Norwegian Escape, as he hosts curated events about ocean conservation on board and at each port of call.
BAHAMAS PARADISE CRUISE LINE HOSTS TRAVEL AGENT SEMINAR Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line welcomed more than 200 North America-based travel advisors aboard the Grand Classica for its “Seminar at Sea” in July. The two-day experience included presentations given by the cruise line’s leadership team, a series of networking opportunities and a private party at the all-inclusive Viva Wyndham Fortuna Beach Resort on Grand Bahama Island – along with leadership team members explaining the commission structure beginning at 15 percent, with no non-commissionable fares (NCFs), along with the line’s Cruise and Stay Program.
Carnival’s New ‘Crew Gratitude’ Video Series CARNIVAL CRUISE LINE PARTNERS WITH CLEAN THE WORLD TO ASSIST IN GLOBAL SOAP RECYCLING INITIATIVE Carnival Cruise Line became the first large-scale cruise operator to partner with Clean the World. Through this global sustainability program, nearly 40 tons of discarded soap will be collected each year to be recycled into new soap bars and distributed to vulnerable communities worldwide. As part of the program, Carnival will start collecting discarded soap from guest and crew staterooms throughout the fleet and send it to a Clean the World recycling center where the soap will be sanitized, melted down and reprocessed. Together, Carnival and Clean the World will distribute more than 400,000 new, clean bars of soap to people in need across the globe each year. The new program rolled out across its entire North American fleet by the end of July. It is one of multiple initiatives underway to further reduce waste disposal and recycle additional products used on board.
Carnival Cruise Line is releasing a four-part video series called “Crew Gratitude” for travel advisors and their clients focusing on six crew members, showing the impact that Carnival’s guests have made on their lives and families through gratuities. “I get so many questions from our guests and travel advisors asking about our Gratuities Program – what it is, who gratuities go to and why they matter,” said Adolfo Perez, senior vice president of global sales and trade marketing. “When I sat down to chat with some of our onboard crew members, the impact gratuities have on their lives and the lives of their families was clear. That’s what we’re
hoping to showcase through this ‘Crew Gratitude’ video series.” The videos aim to help travel advisors and their clients get to know shipboard crew members—the people responsible for delivering unforgettable guest experiences—on a more personal level. These frontline team members lead the efforts in providing the services that deliver an exceptional cruise vacation, which help advisors build client loyalty to the Carnival brand and earn repeat bookings for the agency. “We want everyone who watches these videos to connect with our crew members and see how the gratuities they pay truly make it possible for them to fulfill their dreams, aspirations and family goals,” said Perez.
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WE FILL SHIPS CRUISE SHIPS ROCKET SHIPS THEME PARKS BEACHES
5 Million Annual Visitors. 7 s ’ o d n a l r Port Canaveral is the Closest Port to O Close to fast-growing Orlando — the theme park capital of the world — and next door to Kennedy Space Center, with four international airports within an hour’s drive, Port Canaveral is well located to support future cruise passenger growth. GROWING CRUISE PORT: • $163+ million new CT3 is scheduled to be completed in Summer 2020 to accommodate Carnival MARDI GRAS. • Mardi Gras is the ﬁrst clean technology LNGpowered ship to be homeported in North America— at Port Canaveral. • Disney Cruise Line Is expanding its footprint here, with two of three new ships (under construction) to homeport at Port Canaveral. Expect terminal upgrades to CT8 and CT10 by 2021.
Explore the business opportunities and secure your future cruise ship berth at Port Canaveral.
CONNECT to our Business Development Team 321.783.7831, Ext 251 www.PortCanaveral.com
The Appeal of a Small Cruise Ship
ailing on a small cruise ship offers a unique and enriching experience. With low capacities, most small ships have a one-to-one ratio for crew and guests, and everyone has a better opportunity to get to know one another, making friendships that could last a lifetime. These types of cruises are also heavily focused on the destination and self-enrichment, both ashore and onboard. Guests hear from historical and cultural lectures and enjoy performances put on by the local community, who often come onboard while the shipâ€™s in port, and small shipsâ€™ sailings offer a broader, more in-depth appreciation for each port of call. Many ships can stay in port for longer than their larger counterparts, and even at times dock in overnight, and the ports them-
selves will vary much more as small vessels can easily be accommodated at many exotic and niche destinations. Guests even get to know the ship better, discovering every tiny detail of the vessel, making the ship feel like home after just a few days. Though true that larger ships are filled with an array of fantastic features, these types of ships may be overwhelming to some cruisers. Everyone has different tastes and preferences, and those who are looking for a holiday with an intimate feel, a small ship cruise can be the perfect option. Travel agents should bring to life the incredible experiences a small ship cruise has to offer, focusing on how guests are able to fully immerse themselves in the destinations they visit, as this will be a key
selling point for small ship cruises. That being said, the ships also play an important part, and agents should remember to tell clients about the speakers and performers who come onboard, who can truly bring the history and culture of a destination to life. As it becomes increasingly popular to travel in a way that offers authentic, enriching and immersive experiences, the future of small ship cruising is extremely positive. Travel agents have great potential for increased bookings in this sector, and as small ships offer an ultra-luxury experience combined with the opportunity to travel to more than one destination, agents have the opportunity to sell to an entirely new market of luxury travelers who are yet to take a cruise.
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New Milestones and a Bright Horizon for Puerto Rico By Carla Campos, Executive Director, Puerto Rico Tourism Company
or those of you reading this at the FCCA Cruise Conference & Trade Show, we are honored to welcome you to Puerto Rico. Cruise ship travel has long been a vital part of Caribbean economy and, as such, is a fundamental component of Puerto Rico’s tourism industry growth. The island continues to strengthen its position as a leader in the tourism industry in the Caribbean, and the cruise segment continues to thrive at a steady pace. The arrival of new cruises, new routes and the increase in visitors showcase the quality of Puerto Rico as a destination and the attractiveness it has for the cruise industry, as well as its customers. BREAKING RECORDS The cruise industry continues betting on Puerto Rico as a great travel destination for their clients. Our cruise ship incentive program, diverse offer, modern facilities and port infrastructure, the renowned hospitality and warmth of our people, as well the island’s privileged geographic location and convenient air and maritime access options, make Puerto Rico an attractive stop for cruise travelers.
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Our forecast for a record breaking 2018/19 FY was met and exceeded. The final tally confirms Puerto Rico welcomed 1,814,157 million visitors arriving on a total of 558 port visits, an economic impact of $217 million to the Island’s economy. This record shows an increase of 304,874 passengers and $18.2 million from the previous record established back in 2014/15 FY. From November 2018 to
”THE CRUISE INDUSTRY HAS PROVEN TO BE A STEADFAST PARTNER THAT CONTINUES TO PLAY AN IMPORTANT ROLE IN FURTHERING PUERTO RICO’S REPUTATION…” January 2019, we welcomed six new ships to our ports: Royal Princess; Symphony of the Seas; Celebrity Edge; Viking Sun; Nieuw Statendam and MSC Magnifica. The arrival of these vessels along new routes and additional visits contribute to the strengthening and non-stop growth Puerto Rico’s tourism industry is experiencing.
The arrival of these guests benefits all sectors of our industry businesses, restaurants, tour operators and other tourism services far beyond the pier area promoting economic development and growth. As the cruise sector’s growth and progress continue, we proactively look for innovative ways to create tools, strengthen alliances, renew our inventory and diversify service and entertainment options. We are committed to maintaining and enhancing Puerto Rico’s image as a world-class destination by providing our guests with a unique visit each time they travel to the island. EXPERIENCE. CONNECT. SHARE. The Caribbean remains the leading cruise destination in the world, and the industry is projected to continue growing through-
out 2019. The demand for routes and new options within the region continues to grow, and repeat visits to each destination are increasingly common. Puerto Rico’s tourism industry continues looking for ways to reimagine our destination. We are working hard with our partners to offer the best and most varied alternatives of service, offerings and entertainment as a destination. There are three main trends in current travelers’ preferences—social media and connectivity; total relaxation; and genuine travel—and Puerto Rico offers options in all. Passengers can start sharing and posting as they are welcomed to Puerto Rico by the iconic San Felipe del Morro and the historic city walls. At the pier, live entertainment, local artisans, and several installations make it easy to make the arrival an Instagrammable moment.
of Puerto Rico’s criollo cuisine or a stroll through Santurce’s urban art district and museums to an enjoyable tour on the history of our renowned Salsa music, these tours combine the sense of contact and fun that allow everyone to experience our island’s exceptional culture and warmth. The tourism industry is committed to creating a positive impact on both travelers and residents while minimizing its impact on the environment. The Puerto Rico Tourism Company’s (PRTC) ecotourism
“…AN ECONOMIC IMPACT OF $217 MILLION TO THE ISLAND’S ECONOMY.”
The beauty and variety of the island is everywhere, from lounging at some of the most beautiful beaches in the world or leisurely strolling through a culinary district, to ziplining over the tropical landscape, the perfect sharing video or photo is just a click away. Travelers who take the road less traveled can find off-the-beaten path, authentic and meaningful travel. Local entrepreneurs and companies are constantly renewing their offerings and providing customers with immersive experiences. Guided, small group tours give our guests unique ways to connect with local culture. From a taste
program focuses on tour operators and community-based initiatives that enhance local quality of life, as well as increasing our destination’s diversity. The island’s unique geography includes coastal plains, caves and caverns, mangrove forests, salt plains, coral reefs and other ecosystems that will charm every ecotourism enthusiast. Agrotourism offers a behind the scenes look of how our island’s harvests have shaped Puerto Rican culture and traditions. Puerto Rico’s agrotourism offer continues to expand. Visitors can tour restored working coffee haciendas and watch the process of harvesting, roasting and grinding our famous coffee; harvest their own lunch and learn about agricultural techniques at local produce farms; witness how artisanal rum factories make
their flavored rums; and blend their own ingredients to create the perfect cheese at a processing plant. The success of these businesses showcases Puerto Rico as a diverse, strong, first-class destination and its importance as a hub in the Caribbean region. Those wanting to extend their stay can choose among the island’s diverse accommodations. Puerto Rico has a current inventory of over 15,000 rooms, with additional inventory on the way. Three distinctive categories of lodgings that are characterized by their local family ambiance are Bed & Breakfasts, Paradores and Posadas. Each facility is run independently and represents part of Puerto Rico’s history, culture and hospitality. Paradores and Posadas are trademark programs of PRTC, and all three provide tourists the opportunity to enjoy a truly local experience. FULL SPEED AHEAD The cruise industry has proven to be a steadfast partner that continues to play an important role in furthering Puerto Rico’s reputation as an attractive and accessible destination. Tourism is a force for improving people’s quality of life, and we continue to navigate towards a brighter future. THIRD QUARTER 2019 | TRAVEL & CRUISE 49
Barbados’ Prosperous Past and Prolific Present Cruises to a Festive Future
he year was 1909 when The West India Committee started promoting cruise itineraries to the Caribbean with the sole purpose of increasing public awareness about the ease and affordable access to the West Indies by cruise ship. Barbados soon became one of the more popular ports of call, welcoming its first organized cruise in 1910 when the 8,000-ton Ortana arrived on January 18th from Southampton on a voyage that began two weeks earlier on January 5th. This was the first all-inclusive Caribbean cruise to the region. Following their stop in Barbados, passengers were transferred to a yacht and continued their Caribbean cruise. During this era, travel for health and wellness were the primary motivators. The cruise package was advertised as offering travelers “a new, healthful, refreshing and entirely delightful holiday.” During the infancy of the cruise industry, ships arrived early in the morning and departed at midnight. With many itineraries featuring at least a full day in port with ships departing late, visitors were able to experience a multi-faceted encounter with the island. Shore excursions had a magical formula, which highlighted the diversity of Barbados. The island tour included shopping, lunch and a cross-country tour ending at a spectacular beach. Visitors were then treated to supper and returned to the city to enjoy its nightlife that featured musical performances at some of the main theatres and entertainment at city hotels. Ships sailed away at midnight to the next Caribbean port. The cruise ship industry of the past provided Barbados with major exposure, which influenced the growth of long-stay arrivals to the island. Thanks to this successful history, Barbados continues to welcome several cruise liners bringing numerous visitors to its shores. The island also continues to attract many visitors for stay-over visits, with efforts particularly heating up during summer when cruise calls cool down. As it was in the past, Barbados’ diversity of experiences ensures 50 THIRD QUARTER 2019 | TRAVEL & CRUISE
constant day and nighttime activities guaranteed to enthrall the most discerning traveler. The Crop Over Festival celebration from early June to the first Monday in August each year is the island’s biggest cultural festival. It features weeks of music, art, craft and food, and culminates with one massive street party on Grand Kadooment Day filled with costumed revelers dancing for hours along a parade route. Often, the World’s Wealthiest Female Musician and Barbadian Cultural Ambassador Rihanna appears easily alongside her people enjoying the annual celebration. For visitors who cruise into the island for just one day, the newly created Festive Fridays party, a stone’s throw away from the cruise port, serves up a sample of the Crop Over Festival, inclusive of street parade with pulsating music. But Crop Over and Rihanna are just two of the most well-known features of Barbados. Here is a small sample of facts also unique to Barbados: •
Barbados remained a colony of England from its initial settlement in 1625 until Independence in 1966. It is the only island in the Caribbean never to have changed hands during the bitter British/European battles for colonies;
Barbados has the third-oldest Parliament in the British Commonwealth, dating back to 1639;
Rum (and the name “rum” or “rumbullion”) was created in Barbados, and the oldest rum—known as Mount Gay Rum—is still being manufactured today along with fine rums from other awarded distilleries;
Barbados is the only country visited by George Washington (later President George Washington) outside of North America in 1751;
The Treaty of Oistins that was negotiated and signed at The Mermaid Tavern in Oistins in Barbados in 1652, and its concept of “No Taxation without Representation” was the inspiration for the Boston Tea Party in 1773 and subsequently included in the American Declaration of Independence in 1775. A careful reading of the two documents would reveal that about half of the Treaty of Oistins has been incorporated into the American Declaration of Independence;
The oldest Jewish synagogue in the Western Hemisphere is located in Barbados;
Morgan Lewis Sugar Mill is the largest and only complete sugar windmill surviving in the Caribbean.
Mount Hillaby, Barbados’ highest peak, is actually the top of an undersea mountain range that extends from Trinidad to Puerto Rico. Mount
Hillaby is the only part of the range that sticks out above the water; •
The collection of great houses and historic churches includes the St. James Parish Church, where the First Settlers are buried;
Adding to this robust history and inimitable features are countless attractions, many of which begin when the sun goes down. Some of the Barbadian night attractions that come highly recommended include the Historic Garrison Night Tour, a guided walking tour of the area that features the macabre history of crime and punishment at this remarkable site. Further south, a visit to St. Lawrence Gap showcases a multitude of bars, restaurants and nightclubs, while an evening in Oistins is a more casual experience featuring grilled seafood dinners, drinks and karaoke with the locals.
The West Coast is much more glamorous and would have probably appealed to the Rothschilds and Vanderbilts when they visited over a century earlier – if its attractions had existed then. The exquisite Limegrove Lifestyle Centre—with its range of high-end boutiques, luxury goods and international cuisine—beckons the affluent in search of unique treats. Nearby, an evening in 2nd Street, Holetown may reveal the hide-
out of a visiting celebrity enjoying drinks, food or a party with friends. Just along Barbados’ shores, above and below, even more charming evening experiences await. A cruise on a catamaran, like Tiami or Cat & The Fiddle, offers a delectable buffet, countless cocktails and an impressive sunset viewpoint. The Atlantis Submarine fascinates with a nighttime dive that showcases the beauty of the coral reef and exposes the hiding places of underwater night predators. Overall, the vast number and amazing diversity of attractions and experiences in Barbados encourage an even longer stay than early morning to midnight can fulfill, as it did so many years ago. It was this previous model that drove the development of the land-based and hotel sector in the 1900s. The longer the cruise stay and island encounter, the greater the attraction to its people, beautiful landscapes, food, rich heritage and beaches.
Staying in Barbados before or after a cruise vacation is undoubtedly a must. Daily airlift from major cities and gateways in Canada, USA and the UK make this dream vacation closer to reality. Furthermore, Barbados’ assortment in accommodation choices caters to those looking for luxurious all-inclusive resorts, intimate hotels with outstanding service and amenities, private villas or a home away from home like an Airbnb or HomeAway property. The future of Barbados’ cruise industry is definitely looking bright – sunglasses required (shirt and shoes optional). THIRD QUARTER 2019 | TRAVEL & CRUISE 51
Saint Lucia Forging Ahead with Village Tourism
ith eight communities across the length and breadth of Saint Lucia earmarked for the development of village tourism, the scenic west coast town of Soufriere has taken the lead to serve as the pilot project. Visitors to Saint Lucia can now enjoy several amenities in the town of Soufriere. With must-do iconic sites including the renovated Sulphur Springs and expanded Mud Baths, Tet Paul Nature Trail, The Botanical Gardens and several waterfalls, whether visiting by land or sea, there is lots to see and do in this vibrant, picturesque and historic getaway. The government of Saint Lucia recently unveiled several projects in the warm touristic town. Humming Bird Beach underwent a major transformation
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project resulting in the new “Soufriere Beach Park at Hummingbird Beach.” Officially opened in June, the beach park offers the services of a restaurant, beach bar, smoothie bar, spa, outdoor showers, a pizzeria and a souvenir shop amongst other amenities. With the newly commissioned public bus terminal at Old Trafford, getting to and from Soufriere has been made more comfortable and easier. From Castries to Vieux Fort, there are coded routes of 4F, 3F, and 4J. Soufriere also offers great dining facilities and boutique accommodations, but if you are looking for a daily farm-to-table experience, then you’re in the perfect place for organic fruits and vegetables sold at affordable prices by market vendors.
At the latest unveiled project, the Soufriere Town Square, visitors can also rest, relax and bask in the stunning backdrop of a modern water fountain, a freedom monument built over a clad stone base that resembles an old windmill, numerous seats, urban umbrellas, bins, Victorian lights, security cameras, free Wi-Fi and handicap accessibility. The other communities listed for development under the National Village Tourism Programme are Gros-Islet, Anse La Raye, Canaries, Choiseul, Vieux Fort and Micoud. The idea is to convert each of the communities into a tourism destination, showcasing its unique culture, heritage and history. Each community’s focus will be different, thereby creating an experience for visitors unlike any other destination. Gros-Islet, Anse La Raye and Soufriere are ideally fishing villages and will be the first three hamlets under the pilot project to realize transformation into Tourism Villages.
Courtesy of the Emerald Estate
Slave Memorial by Shutterstock
Martinique: Experience the Caribbean Heritage
nown as the ‘island of flowers,’ Martinique offers travelers an experience like none other. An overseas department of France in the Lesser Antilles, the island is famous for its colorful flora, lush mountains, tropical forests, and stunning coastline, but what really sets it apart is the distinct mix of Creole and French cultures that can be felt everywhere from the warmth of its people to its cuisine, music and monuments. Spend the day exploring Fort-deFrance, Martinique’s capital city, and discover impressive cultural landmarks: the exquisite 19th-century Schoelcher Library, the seaside fortress Fort Saint-Louis, and the imposing Saint-Louis Cathedral. Another essential stop is the Aimé Césaire Museum, set up in the former office of the celebrated Martinican poet, playwright, and politician. About an hour south of Fort-deFrance is La Savane des Esclaves, an open-air museum dedicated to the history of Martinique, winner of a Travelers’ Choice award from TripAdvisor. No visit to southern Martinique would be complete without seeing the spectacular Diamond Rock, a 574-foot-high basalt island off the shore of the Grande Anse du Diamant, an idyllic sandy beach. Opposite Diamond Rock, the Anse Cafard Slave Memorial is made up of twenty colossal white statues commemorating the slave ship that sank there in 1830. Or head up north to visit the city of Saint-Pierre, also known as “the Paris of
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the Caribbean,” which was destroyed when Mount Pelée erupted in 1902. The remaining charred building facades, including a church and a theater, hint at the sophistication of Saint-Pierre. A highlight to visit is the newly renovated Franck A. Perret museum. Modern art is also honoring SaintPierre with 32 giant totems created by Caribbean artists. Another highlight of the north—and one that also boasts a breathtaking view of Mount Pelée—is the 60-acre nature park Domaine d’Emeraude, a must-visit if you’re looking to immerse yourself in Martinique’s exceptional biodiversity. Take a leisurely stroll along more than two miles of footpaths in the landscaped forest.
Aimé Césaire Theater by A. Omere
Lambis grilles by L. Chamoiseau
And of course, all over the island you’ll have the opportunity to sample Martinique’s distinctive cuisine, which draws on African, Indian, and French traditions. Experience
the famous mix of warm hospitality and French savoir-faire as you indulge in Creole specialties, fresh seafood, spicy curries, baguette sandwiches, artisanal sorbets and ice creams. For an authentic Martinican experience, order a plate of accras—crispy, tender codfish fritters—and a Ti-Punch cocktail made with famous Martinican rums. No matter where your journey takes you on this French Caribbean island, you’ll discover why Martinique, c’est magnifique!
The French Caribbean Port of Call
Balata gardens, Schœlcher
This Caribbean island boasts modern cruise terminals only a stone’s throw from safe and vibrant urban centers, local gourmet cuisine, unspoiled nature, and exciting excursions for everyone. A warm Creole welcome awaits you in Martinique!
Habitation Clément, Le François
A colorful parade during Carnival
Visit us today
Pointe Simon Terminal, Fort-de-France
CAYMAN BRANCHING OUT WITH CRUISE PORT AND DOWNTOWN GEORGE TOWN DEVELOPMENTS Following last quarter’s record-breaking tourism numbers in the Cayman Islands, as well as enhancements to continue the momentum, the destination has moved full steam ahead on two significant projects: its cruise and cargo port and developments in downtown George Town. The cruise and cargo port will reportedly cost just under CI$200 million to build, government revealed on August 5 as it formally announced the Verdant Isle group as the preferred bidder for the project: a significant milestone in a project that has been in procurement for some six years. The group—comprised of Carnival Cruise Line and Royal Caribbean, along with local construction companies McAlpine and Orion Marine—will fund the project through capital from the two cruise lines and a loan from FirstCaribbean International Bank: what Premier Alden McLaughlin called a “unique financial structure” that ensures no risk to the government, with no single cruise company controlling the pier, and proof that the cruise lines are financially invested in the long-term success of the Cayman Islands. In return, Verdant Isle will receive a portion of the head tax, with the difference in the passenger fee increase and a government allowance going to the 56 THIRD QUARTER 2019 | TRAVEL & CRUISE
group. However, overall costs will remain roughly the same through the elimination of the tender fee and the government’s reduction of its head tax share. While government will take approximately $2 per passenger less in head tax, it expects to make up the difference through increased arrivals. Premier McLaughlin said he believed government had secured a great deal for the Cayman Islands, continuing that the final design improves the environmental impact by moving it to deeper water and involving a coral relocation project. While acknowledging there was much work to do before construction begins, including an updated environmental impact assessment on the final design, geotechnical studies of the harbor and the finalization of the contract, the premier said he believed work would not begin until next summer at the earliest, with construction expected to take two and a half years. Funding from other cruise lines, who had signed letters of intent offering part financing to the project, will not be required. Instead they, have agreed passenger guarantees with Verdant Isle in exchange for priority berthing rights at the new pier. Separately, George Town Manager Colin Lumsden and other officials addressed the public in late July to provide an update on developments in downtown George Town. Lumsden shared some of the development plans—which incorporate mixed-use buildings, commercial and institutional areas to boost business growth and multi-family sites and single-family dwellings to improve housing diversity—and informed that a ‘complete streets’ concept is being explored to integrate bike lanes, sidewalks, safe crosswalks and trees into the zone’s roadways, with the hope of making George Town both more modern and welcoming for residents and visitors alike. He continued that city planners are focused on a 200-acre space along Harbour Drive, and that though some ongoing efforts—such as code reforms, capital infrastructure development, public consultations and minimum operation upgrades—will carry on past 2022, the research and planning phase is expected to conclude by 2020.
Governor Albert Bryan Jr. addressing CHRIS delegates in Miami
INVESTOR EXCITEMENT FOR USVI TOURISM USVI Governor Albert Bryan Jr. is extremely encouraged by the response of investors to the tourism opportunities and incentives offered by the Territory. He shared that excitement at the Caribbean Hotel and Resort Investment Summit (CHRIS), especially as he and the Territory’s team broadcast a strong message “that we’re open for business.” He informed that federal resources are being invested into the infrastructure to drive his administration’s plans for presenting St. Thomas as a top tier tourism product, while developing distinct identities for St. John and St. Croix. Also fueling the excitement, he added, were the high number of arrivals at airports and strong cruise ship numbers returning after the 2017 storms. The governor, who addressed a plenary conference session featuring heads of government from the British Virgin Islands and French St. Martin, said some investors were awed at the scale of incentives the USVI government offered businesses. “To have a destination in the United States, where you can get 100 percent exemption from your state taxes and 90 percent exemption from your federal income taxes, is just incredible.” Describing the importance of the industry, Governor Bryan asserted that tourism is an export business. “The hotel product is sold to people from foreign places. Getting them to our islands and getting them in the hotel is the battle, but we don’t actually make a lot of money directly off our hotels. It’s the ability to house people who shop, eat, want to play, want to
have different experiences in the Virgin Islands…and that’s where we derive great economic benefit as a government and a community,” which was why, he said, his administration was focused on securing new developments. In the cruise sector, the governor wanted to see passengers extend their time on shore, and convert one-day excursions to longer forays around the Territory. Such extensions, he added, would benefit the community economically. Lamenting that no new hotel has been built for decades, he pledged his personal attention to the streamlining of official procedures so hotel developers could get new hotels operational quickly. Priority tourism goals, according to the governor, include the completion of the Long Bay Landing cruise pier project on St. Thomas, finishing the waterfront apron, revitalizing the Main Street area, adding new attractions and renovating the Territory’s two airports. On St. Croix, in addition to breaking ground on a new hotel, he was looking forward to completing harbor dredging so smaller cruise ships can berth in Christiansted. Attracting more calls into Frederiksted was also critical.
standard of service provided to visitors by equipping locals working in the hospitality industry with the education and desire to exceed guest expectations, while serving as another example of the destination’s focus on investing in its human resources. “As our country moves forward with the sustainable redevelopment of our tourism industry, the enhancement of our human resources is essential,” said Minister of TEATT Hon. Stuart Johnson following the start of the workshops. With more than 440 participants, the training focused not only on the wants and needs of diverse cruise guests that continually move full steam ahead, but also—as Johnson pointed out—help ensure “our people here in St. Maarten are the first and best candidates for the jobs that will become available.” Also included in the tailored training program was a segment on the history and culture of Saint Martin presented by St. Maarten Service Academy Founder Josianne Fleming Artsen to provide general information about the Saint Martin product that every resident should be able to communicate. For more information about the destination, visit PortStMaarten. com or @PortStMaarten on Facebook.
SINT MAARTEN INVESTS IN HUMAN RESOURCES, STANDARD OF SERVICE Sint Maarten’s ‘frontline’ was recently armed with weapons of mass satisfaction through a tailored Frontline Training Program by Aquila’s Center for Cruise Excellence to elevate the destination’s
BVI: #1 FOR 3RD YEAR For the third consecutive year, the British Virgin Islands has ranked number 1 for Best Places to Visit in the Caribbean by US News & World Report of the Best Vacation Destinations. With 60 islands and cays, guests are guaranteed endless possibilities of adventure and tranquility through the destination’s untouched landscapes, either on land or at sea.
In fact, BVI was also voted 2019’s “Best Caribbean Adventure Destination” by Caribbean Journal, because of its wide range of activities for guests of all ages: from snorkeling for kids to wreck-diving, snuba and kiteboarding for adults, as well as numerous hiking trails and other watersport activities. Discover the underworld, beneath the surface without getting wet in YOLO Adventures BVI’s 100% see-through kayaks. (Transfers to and from Cyril B. Romney Tortola Pier Park can be arranged.) For more information, visit BVITourism.com.
DOMINICAN REPUBLIC TOURISM SHOWS STRENGTH Dominican Republic welcomed 3.57 million guests between this January and June—4 percent more than the same period in 2018, with notable increases in arrivals from North America (7.1%) and Central America and the Caribbean (5.6%)—according to a July report by the Central Bank of the Dominican Republic. The increases should come as no surprise, as the result of a joint work of the public and private sector has allowed a growth of more than 40 million visitors in the last seven years, including the cruise industry and its great development recently. Things should only get stronger, as 65 hotel projects have been approved through 2019, and government and tourism leaders have focused on developing and promoting regions beyond Punta Cana – such as an ambitious renovation project for Santo Domingo and a plan to open the city’s Malecon with a bike path and recreation areas Additionally, the Ministry of Tourism – MITUR – in a joint initiative with the port of Santo Domingo (Sans Soucí) hosted two FCCA Customer Service and THIRD QUARTER 2019 | TRAVEL & CRUISE 57
On Land Frontline Staff Training Sessions facilitated by AQUILA Center for Cruise Excellence in August as part of the destination’s commitment to raising the level of service excellence. In total 240 participants took part in the training. Among the participants were taxi drivers, port personal, immigration, police, tour guides, tour operators and vendors.
for us to capitalize on this potential,” per Hon. Bartlett. The destination is also focusing on its visitor safety and experience, with the recent appointment of Major Dave Walker as Jamaica’s new director of visitor safety and experience, who was immediately tasked with the directive of reviewing the initial report from the recent island-wide security audit of the tourism sector and submitting a final report with recommendations on the way forward by the start of the winter tourist season. Major Walker previously spent more than 23 years in the military, where he served in various operational and strategic capacities.
Hon. Bartlett (center) touring the Salt River area of Clarendon on June 3
JAMAICA TOURISM MINISTRY TO CREATE MINI-DESTINATIONS, MAXIMUM VISITOR EXPERIENCE AND SAFETY Jamaica is looking to develop the tourism product in untraditional areas across the island to fully maximize its tourism potential through adding density and prioritizing its carbon footprint, according to Minister of Tourism Hon. Edmund Bartlett. He told that the destination has formed an initiative to create “mini-destinations” that can attract and support large numbers, while ensuring inclusiveness and engaging the local communities. Potential sites include Clarendon, which he said could be marketed as an ecologically-friendly tourist hotspot—with attractions including Salt River, the Salt River Mineral Spring and Jackson Bay Beach, which have been earmarked for development—and areas of St. Thomas and Hanover capital, Lucea, which are also being targeted. St Mary could also be on the radar. Perched at the top of the island and home to a robust history featuring indigenous Taino people and legends of the Maroons, St Mary “has huge geophysical assets in terms of its beaches, waterfalls and rivers that can definitely be converted into tremendous experiences for tourism and the time is now 58 THIRD QUARTER 2019 | TRAVEL & CRUISE
DOMINICA IS OPEN Dominica has written another page for the post-Maria comeback stories, welcoming 23,444 stay-over arrivals during the first quarter and a meteoric 87.5% increase compared to the same period last year, according to numbers by Discover Dominica Authority (DDA) released in July. Perhaps even more impressively, the total represented 11.2% more than the same period in 2017 – and included some March madness, with 110% and 70% respective increases compared to the spans in 2018 and 2017. Unsurprisingly, DDA has a positive outlook for 2019 that could bring visitor arrivals back to or possibly exceed pre-Maria levels. Plus, the destination is in a bona fide hotel boom. A new luxury eco hotel, the Sanctuary Rainforest Eco Resort and Spa, is setting its roots in the lush landscape of Laudat. Featuring a collection of 72 villas—all designed to be resistant to Category 5 hurricanes—along with a yoga and meditation facility, spa and more, the project joins a host of other hotel developments including the reopening of a “bigger and brighter” Jungle Bay Resort with an expansion from 35-60 villas and a focus on health and wellness; the recently opened 120-room
Anichi Resort and Spa in Portsmouth; and the under construction 160-room Cabrits Hotel and Spa in northern Dominica.
PARTNERSHIP OF TAXI DRIVERS FROM ST MAARTEN & GUADELOUPE On June 12, a delegation of eight taxi drivers from Guadeloupe met colleagues from St Maarten with the objective of Guadeloupe’s taxi drivers learning how St. Maarten has earned its ‘Friendly’ moniker in offering some of the best service quality in the Caribbean. The taxi drivers of St Maarten were indeed friendly while helping their Guadeloupe counterparts understand what guests expect. This is the first step of a very productive collaboration between taxi drivers of the two islands.
TAG Photo by @orlando_p.r [IG]
AGUADILLA FLYING TO NEW HIGHS Aguadilla, a town on Puerto Rico’s northwestern tip, is welcoming record passenger arrivals. The destination’s airport handled 63,223 passengers in April—37% above the previous record set last year—and a total of 251,898 passengers in the first four months of 2019, an additional 100,000 compared to the same period in 2018. At this pace, it would make 2019 the third consecutive year of record-breaking traffic.
Airlines wasted no time lifting off with an expansion – announcing in July that an upgrade was confirmed to year-round service beginning December 21. The flights are planned to operate once per week on Saturdays.
travel elite gathered for the World Travel Awards Latin America Ceremony in La Paz, Bolivia. Colombia fended off stiff competition to win the title of ‘South America’s Leading Destination,’ and Costa Rica’s lush cloud forests and rich biodiversity helped it garner the votes for ‘Mexico & Central America’s Leading Destination.’
Cluny Beach, the Guadeloupe Islands Photo by @_mountain.momma_ [IG]
ST KITTS-NEVIS WELCOMES MORE AIR CANADA FLIGHTS Air Canada has announced a second weekly nonstop Toronto - St Kitts flight on Tuesdays in peak season, complementing the carrier’s existing nonstop Saturday service and further expanding on a successful airline-destination partnership. For the first four months of 2019, air passenger arrivals from Air Canada increased over 60 percent compared to 2018. The new flight reinforces St. Kitts’ potential air arrivals growth for 2020 and is part of the destination’s strategy to further develop its tourism industry by building out airlift from select target gateways with valued air partners to support its expanding hotel product.
JETBLUE TO LAUNCH GUADELOUPE SERVICE The Guadeloupe Islands Tourist Board announced that JetBlue will be expanding their portfolio by adding a new nonstop seasonal service between New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport and Guadeloupe’s Pointe-à-Pitre International Airport. Roundtrip flights will operate three times per week on Saturdays, Mondays and Wednesdays starting Feb. 1, 2020 through the end of April. Flights will then resume in November 2020.
Photo of Colombia’s Piedra del Peñol by @ javi_beldeta [IG] Photo by @dnevna_doza_putovanja [IG]
ARUBA TO WELCOME NEW YEARROUND FLIGHTS FROM LGA After beginning seasonal nonstop service between Aruba and New York’s LaGuardia Airport in June, American
COLOMBIA AND COSTA RICA TAKE HOME WORLD TRAVEL AWARD HONORS Colombia and Costa Rica took home the highest honors at the star-studded ceremony in front of Latin America’s
BREATHE EASY IN COSTA RICA Costa Rica has doubled its forest cover over the last 30 years, with half of its land surface is now covered with trees. In scientific terms, that means more CO2 consumption and O2 production, and for visitors, that means more fuel for all the breathtaking experiences. As part of those ecological efforts, it recently declared the Miravalles Volcano National Park-Jorge Manuel Dengo as the country’s 29th national park in July. Located in the northwestern region of Guanacaste—one of Costa Rica’s hidden gems—the new nearly 5,000-hectare addition features some of Costa Rica’s largest geothermal fields generated by the 6,654ft Miravalles Volcano, as well as wildlife including jaguars, ocelots, cougars and tapirs. Aiding to protected areas now encompassing more than a quarter of Costa Rica’s land mass, more than any other country in the world, the new park’s name honors one of the country’s greatest environmentalists and fundamental to the creation of national parks in Costa Rica. THIRD QUARTER 2019 | TRAVEL & CRUISE 59
NICARAGUA PAVING A ROAD TO OPPORTUNITY The new road connecting Nicaragua’s Pacific region and Caribbean coast is paving countless opportunities for the destination’s development. The road can be traveled in only three hours coast-to-coast, and it—along with the highway connection throughout the country—falls under one of the priorities of the Government of Reconciliation and National Unity.
Photo by @miguelmejia11 [IG]
GUATEMALA APPROACHES RUNWAY FOR $117M MODERNIZATION OF LA AURORA AIRPORT Guatemala’s Ministry of Communications, Infrastructure and Housing confirmed a $117 million project for the International Airport La Aurora (AILA) in July. The project, which was approved through a Public-Private Partnership, plans to modernize the taxiway of the airport’s active runway, approach lights and improvement of the passenger terminal. At the time, the feasibility study had already been received, with a report to be presented later this month and other future plans including engaging the private sector and interested parties. Bidding is expected by 2020, and the project forms part of the destination’s larger plans to modernize its airports and ports. 60 THIRD QUARTER 2019 | TRAVEL & CRUISE
Photo by @ekahughes [IG]
PORT PROJECT DAWNS IN LIMON A new project is dawning for the port terminal of Limón, Costa Rica to help guests spread their wings in the destination. Supported by Instituto Costarricense de Turismo (ICT) and launched in July with immediate aesthetic and functional port upgrades planned at an approximate value of $208,000, the project is focused on communicating Limón’s unique identity and delivering a first impression that encourages guests to experience the destination. “We want to take their breath away right from the first glance, so that they will go on to fall in love with the flavor, natural surroundings, music, culture and beauty,” said Andrea Centeno, Executive President of the Port Administration and Economic Development Board of the Atlantic Coast ( JAPDEVA). “This joint effort allows us to increase the value added that we provide to cruise ship passengers, which translates into a greater positive impact for the community, artisans who operate on the quay, tour operators, transportation workers, small business owners and shipping agents who have linkages to this activity.” The project includes improvements to the exterior of the boarding rooms, the viewpoint, the artisans’ area, the cruise ship quay’s patio area and the service area for passengers and crew. Carmen Rodríguez Vílchez, an artisan who crafts jewelry and sells to cruise guests, highlighted the project’s importance: “This is a way of giving better service to the passengers who will stay in the region and consume local services, meaning that many of us can increase our sales and bring the benefits to our families.”
JAMAICA PM UNVEILS NEWLY COMMISSIONED LNG TERMINAL Speaking at a ceremony to officially unveil the newly commissioned Floating Storage and Regasification Terminal on July 19, Prime Minister, the Most Hon. Andrew Holness, told the facility demonstrates that the country’s consciousness in protecting the environment and reducing energy costs. He also argued that this now establishes Jamaica as a premier liquified natural gas (LNG) hub. Operated by global energy infrastructure company New Fortress Energy, the terminal—the first of its kind in the Caribbean—already has plans to provide LNG to several facilities, including the Jamaica Public Service’s soon-to-be-completed 190 mega-watt power plant in Old Harbour, through natural gas pipelines.
CURAÇAO SIGNS AGREEMENT WITH SANSOUCI Curaçao Ports Authority has signed a Sister Port Agreement with SANSOUCI Port of Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. The Sister Port Agreement embraces a cooperation on cruise tourism, including mutual promotion and participation in cruise-related conventions.
ST. KITTS CONTINUES TRACK RECORD OF SUCCESS St. Kitts exceeded one million cruise passenger arrivals for the first time in the 2017-2018 cruise season. A second pier is on track for completion in fall 2019. Visitors can enjoy unique island attractions including the St. Kitts Scenic Railway, Brimstone Hill fortress and the Caribelle Batik factory.
PORT OF NEW ORLEANS WELCOMES YEAR-ROUND WEEKLY CRUISES BY ROYAL CARIBBEAN Royal Caribbean International has announced year-round weekly cruises from the Port of New Orleans set to begin when Majesty of the Seas arrives to homeport beginning January 2020 through April 2021. Royal Caribbean’s strengthened commitment is a testament to the growing demand for cruises from Port NOLA as New Orleans continues to offer “two vacations in one”.
YUCATAN WELCOMES INAUGURAL DREAM CALL, ADDS A TRADITIONAL DANCE TO THE ITINERARY Carnival Dream made its first arrival to the Yucatán Peninsula in June, and a new folkloric dance of the region’s traditional Jarana was unveiled this summer to give cruise guests a small taste of the Yucatan’s rich flavor that will leave visitors truly memorized.
PORT TAMPA BAY EXCEEDS 1 MILLION GUESTS FOR SECOND CONSECUTIVE YEAR More than 1 million passengers sailed in and out of Port Tampa Bay for the second year in a row. Tampa is the established cruise gateway from the west coast of Florida to the Caribbean. The port authority is investing more than $10 million in upgrade to three cruise terminals.
HOLISTICA INNOVATES DESTINATION DEVELOPMENT FOR EVOLVING WORLD Royal Caribbean Cruises (RCL) and ITM Group are teaming up to form a new destination company, called Holistica, which will create an inclusive model for destination development that works ‘holistically’ to meet the needs of coastal communities, local governments, and land, sea, and air travelers. “The continuing growth and rising popularity of cruise vacations make it clear that the sustainable development of coastal destinations, including the thoughtful evolution of existing ones, is in the travel industry’s best interest,” said Michael Bayley of RCL. “We have spent five decades learning what works and what doesn’t, and we know the potential of strategic development to deliver extraordinary
guest experiences and meet the needs of local communities.” A 50-50 partnership between RCL and ITM Group, Holistica is already exemplifying this philosophy in its first project, a $275 million development in Freeport, The Bahamas, which is centered on the regeneration of the Grand Lucayan resort, the project includes ambitious plans for local ownership, employment, job training, community investment and sustainable construction practices. “A well-designed destination brings economic benefits to communities and cultural enrichment to travelers, while creating the least possible disruption to the human and natural environment,” said Mauricio Hamui of ITM Group. “There is a way to do these projects inclusively, collaboratively, and sustainably – and those are the characteristics this new partnership is meant to embody.” In addition to the Freeport project, the companies said the new venture will own and operate destinations in Costa Maya, Mexico; Roatan, Honduras; and Kumamoto, Japan. These projects, among others, will serve 8 million visitors annually, and be accessible to all travelers, including land and air vacationers and guests of multiple cruise lines. Holistica is also engaged in discussions regarding multiple existing and proposed destinations around the world. “Having more destinations, and developing them in a responsible manner, gives travelers greater vacation quality, and expands the landscape of available travel options as the tourism industry grows,” added Bayley.
BAY OF FUNDY, PORT SAINT JOHN IMPROVING GUEST EXPERIENCE AND FACILITIES On the Bay of Fundy, Port Saint John is continually improving the guest experience and facilities. At the Long Wharf berth, an upgraded experience from debark to city center awaits. At all three of the cruise berths, vessels will now be well supported by non-marking three-meter pneumatic Yokohama fenders. THIRD QUARTER 2019 | TRAVEL & CRUISE 61
CLIA’s 2019 Asia Outlook
sia has seen dynamic changes in the last few years, welcoming the latest ships and new cruise destinations, which have helped grow its source market to become the third-largest after North America and Europe. Asia saw 4.24 million ocean passengers in 2018, representing a 14.8% share of the total global volume. In August, CLIA released its 2019 Asia Cruise Deployment and Capacity Report, which details planned cruise activity in 2019. The report provides the industry with actionable and meaningful information to keep pace with the transformation in this region.
79 ships from 39 cruise brands sailing in Asia, a similar level to last year. Throughout Asia, 306 different destinations will receive cruise ships in 2019, an increase of more than 6% from the 288 destinations offered in 2018. Ships in Asia increasingly call at more places, increasing the range of choice for passengers. Port calls to Asian destinations will remain steady this year with 7,154 calls. Many of the destinations – especially India, Malaysia, Indonesia, Singapore, Japan, Hong Kong and South Korea – will see growth.
HIGHLIGHTS FROM THE 2019 ASIA CRUISE DEPLOYMENT AND CAPACITY REPORT INCLUDE: •
Asia will see 1,917 sailings in 2019 and generate capacity for 4.02 million passengers to cruise in the region. This year’s total passenger capacity has been reduced by 5.7% year-over-year after several years of rapid expansion. The decline was mainly due to the reduction of short cruise itinerary options from mainland China. Nevertheless, 2019 will still see
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“THE OUTLOOK FOR ASIA REMAINS POSITIVE, AND OPPORTUNITIES AWAIT DESTINATIONS AND BUSINESSES…”
Asia will also see a slight rise in passenger destination days. The 13 million passenger destination days forecast in 2019 will translate to more potential onshore visits from cruise passengers, creating a stronger tourism impact for the destinations across the region.
HUGE OPPORTUNITIES REMAIN IN ASIA These latest statistics and figures show that Asia will continue to provide new offerings and destinations for travelers. The variety of cruise options is good news to both long-haul and nearer-to-home travelers looking to explore the diversity of appealing attractions across the different Asian countries. In the next few years, many cruise lines continue to deploy significant capacity in the region, including brand new, large cruise ships purpose-built for Asian consumers. New cruise infrastructure in several Asian destinations is also expected to fuel keen interest among travelers. The outlook for Asia remains positive, and opportunities await destinations and businesses in the Asia cruise industry.
A new partner on board brings more choices on shore. Two paths coming together with a steady goal can broaden horizons for all. Through a shared vision and passion for the cruise industry, Florida-Caribbean Cruise Association (FCCA) and ExcursionInsurance.com have joined paths. As the new administrator of the FCCA Global Tour Operator Insurance Program, ExcursionInsurance.com provides tour operators with the coverage they need to grow their businessâ€”and enhance the destination experience.
To learn more about how this partnership can benefit you, contact our experts today. Hellen Mena Senior Vice President O: 305.728.4788 M: 305.877.7809 firstname.lastname@example.org
Ken Furlow Global Development Officer M: 786.351.3408 email@example.com
CLIA Asia Focus: India and Indonesia
ndonesia and India are two key markets to watch out for, both as cruise destinations and source markets for passengers. CLIA Asia’s priority in supporting the growth of these two markets is to provide essential training for travel agents to help them attract more consumers to go on a cruise holiday. INDIA Destination: India possesses a long, diverse and spectacular coastline, and is one of the most endowed regions of the world in terms of its tourism appeal. However, due to the lack of cruise infrastructure, India is largely untapped as a cruise destination. In 2019, port calls to India are expected to grow to 284, 137% more than 2018, mainly driven by the start of a new domestic cruise line operating in India. With so much potential as a cruise destination, there have been positive signals from the Indian government to focus on cruise development.
Source Market: About 220,900 Indians cruised in 2018, an increase of 28.1% from the previous year. As one of the most populated countries in the world and with a low cruise penetration rate, the India source market is expected to carry on an upward trajectory. Eighty percent of Indians cruise in Asia, with a considerable number opting for fly-cruise holidays out of Singapore. There is also appeal in more distant destinations, with 8.4% sailing in Europe and 9% sailing in the Americas. In 2019, CLIA built upon existing partnerships with Indian entities like CruiseClub, which saw the launch of a mobile app with CLIA’s training content provided exclusively to Indian travel agents. “We’ve had great feedback from agents that they are able to learn at their convenience, anytime and anywhere, without needing to commit long hours. Training is crucial, as in today’s world the consumers are very well informed, and for the trade to upskill is crucial so that highest levels of service can be rendered to these well-informed clients,” said Mr. Kiran Bhandari, co-founder of CruiseClub Vacations. CLIA also returned to SATTE, South Asia’s largest travel trade exhibition held in New Delhi in January 2019, with a workshop and educational session. INDONESIA Destination: Indonesia is the world’s largest archipelagic country, comprising over 17,000 islands. Coupled with its rich culture, year-round tropical climate and alluring
Gebongan, Bali, Indonesia
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nature, Indonesia is a perfect destination for cruising. Spurred by the opening of new cruise ports like Bintan Island, Indonesia saw an impressive 89% year-over-year increase in passenger numbers in 2018. This year is expected to bring 387 port calls in Indonesia, representing a 9% year-over-year increase from 2018. These numbers look set to surge even higher with the government’s interest in developing new tourism destinations for cruising, including Belitung, an island on the east coast of Sumatra. Source Market: Indonesia saw a 54.9% increase in passenger volume in 2018, which propelled it from the 10th to 8th largest source market in Asia. Indonesians still favor shorter cruises in Asia, with options of up to three days gaining on options ranging from four to six days in 2018. A higher proportion of younger cruisers suggests an escalating family segment, bringing the average age to 39 years, a reduction on previous years and lower than the Asia average of 45.4. In June 2019, CLIA held a training session at the 2nd edition of CruiseWorld Indonesia in Jakarta. The turnout of 200 travel agents—far exceeding 2018’s numbers—is a testament to the potential and interest of cruise in Indonesia. Agents at the conference were able to learn about growing their cruise sales through two panel discussions and a 1.5-hour training session from CLIA, leaving inspired by the opportunities in Asia’s growing cruise industry.
SMARTER, FASTER, FRIENDLIER Ranked one of the top cruise ports in the world, Port Everglades offers the speed, service and efficiency to help your business sail smoothly — and your passengers smile wider. Visit porteverglades.net or call 800-421-0188. • Our modern, efficiently operated terminals make transit a breeze. • We move passengers from curb to ship in just 15 minutes. • We’re fully scalable — accommodating any size ship or passenger volume.
• Just two miles from FLL International Airport and minutes from world-famous beaches for easy access. • Our Harbormaster Office is a one-stop concierge open 24/7. • Year-round berthing is available.
The Evolution of Service Excellence By Beth Kelly Hatt, President, Aquila’s Center for Cruise Excellence: FCCA’s Exclusive Training Partner
imes have certainly changed since Aquila moved full steam ahead into the cruise sector in 2010. After starting with an online Tour Guide Excellence certification, we are now involved with developing programs for multiple destination clients, from ports, destinations, tour operators, attractions, tour guides, vendors and more depending on their needs. Today, the Aquila Center for Cruise Excellence works collaboratively with cruise lines, tour operators, attractions and port destinations to help raise the level of excellence. Before getting into some of the how, with this article focusing on a few destinations—Aruba, Dominican Republic and Puerto Rico—that have invested in their training since 2013, it is good to know the why. “It is crucial for tour operators and destinations to look at training as an investment in order to succeed,” said Erika
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Tache, senior director, product development, Carnival Cruise Line. “Keeping up with regular training means you stay on top of the trends and the needs of this continually evolving cruise business. The Aquila Center for Cruise Excellence offers cruise specific training for tour guides, tour operators and destinations that helps raise the level of service excellence.” Together with those throughout the destinations and industry, we continue to develop new ways to bring service excellence to another level. This has required collaboration with the cruise lines and local destination stakeholders in ascertaining the biggest needs for service excellence, asking questions to bring ownership and buy-in to the outcomes, questions that help to discover those needs like: Where is training needed? Are there ways to be more creative and innovative to maximize opportunities? What are the priorities and next steps? How can we best create a cul-
ture of service? Are there opportunities for offering new products and services? How can we help vendors and frontlines become customer focused? In working with a destination, we look at the entire experience as a whole and determine how we can help raise the level of excellence. When we started working with Puerto Rico Tourism Company (PRTC) over six years ago, the challenge was that there were multiple areas needing training. We started with getting tourism stakeholders onboard and helped 80 tour guides through the Tour Guide Excellence Certification. We then worked with the major tour operators on coaching them through attaining the ACE Tour Operator Designation. The collaboration with PRTC has continued yearly since then, with Aquila delivering numerous other training programs, including the FCCA Customer Service and Frontline Training, product development workshops and ses-
Members & Travel Agents
sions with government agencies on working together in maximizing opportunities in cruise. Aruba is another example of a destination that has continued investing in training their people and collaborating with us yearly over the last six years – beginning with workshops and training for tour operators and tour guides and evolving into a variety of other training and workshops during their annual tourism conferences. Most of Aruba’s tour guides have received their Tour Guide Excellence Certification, and most tour operators are now working on attaining the ACE Tour Operator Designation. “The Aruba Tourism Authority recognizes the importance of training to enhance the experience of our cruise visitors,” said Mario Arends, cruise manager, Aruba Tourism Authority. “Together with Aquila, we have carried out training sessions for tour guides and tour operators that have been very well received and have
proven to give the results we were looking for. We can’t recommend this enough.” A further example of continuous investments in training is the Dominican Republic, where yearly investments were made over the last six years for online tour guide training. Then in 2015, just prior to the opening of Amber Cove, Puerto Plata invested in training and certifying almost 200 tour guides excited to welcome the first ships. These investments make a huge difference to guest satisfaction ratings, while also empowering and benefitting the local people, in a destination – and it is never too late to start a training plan to improve a factor that always makes an impression on guests. After all, guests always remember—and often tell their friends and followers about—their experiences with the people throughout destinations, from tour guides and taxi drivers sharing stories that will be retold around campfires to a port worker simply smiling at a guest.
As we continue to develop training workshops and programs to meet industry needs, we work closely with cruise line executives, especially on the Shorex side, to make sure we are all on the same page. This means regular conversations around what the needs are. A destination’s investment in training is directly correlated to the destination’s success in receiving higher guest satisfaction ratings that leads to increased tourism, for both cruise and stay-over guests. Now is the time to review your investment plan and consider how beyond the infrastructure, your people truly lay the foundation and can deliver some of the best possible ROI (recommendations on investment). It is also the perfect place for anyone reading this at Seatrade Europe or the FCCA Cruise Conference & Trade Show, as Aquila is ready, willing and able to meet with you to work on this plan together. For more information, contact Beth@CruiseExcellence.com.
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Cruise Capital of the World
Your Cruise Awaits
For fly-in convenience, culture, non-stop entertainment, or simply relaxing in the warm Southern California sunshine, nothing beats a cruise vacation out of the Port of Los Angeles. Our world-renowned home-ported cruise lines offer exceptional accommodations and itineraries to suit any passenger preference. And when your clients are back on land, there’s no limit to the fun they can have in greater LA – one of the world’s most popular vacation destinations. So book them on a one-of-a-kind experience that they’ll truly love. Follow us on
For more information, visit www.portoflosangeles.org or www.lawaterfront.org
Members & Travel Agents AQUILA LAUNCHES NEW ONLINE TRAINING PROGRAM A new 90-minute online training program is now available from the Aquila Center for Cruise Excellence on creating a Culture of Respect. Focusing on topics such as respectful behavior, harassment and cultural differences, this is a great addition to Aquila’s Tour Guide Excellence International Certification. For more information, contact Claudine@CruiseExcellence.com YAAMAN ADVENTURE PARK Grab a front row seat and partake in a true experience with mother nature, and all of the vast activities that we have to offer in Jamaica. Feel an adrenaline rush on our Buggy or ATV and enjoy Jamaica’s untouched natural wonder at the Secret River suited for all visitors!
COZUMEL’S REEFS NEED YOU Help us to restore the coral reefs of Cozumel with a group of local marine biologists. Sand Dollar Sports has joined forces with “Global Coral Reef Alliance” (GCRA), “Cozumel Coral Reef Restoration Program” (CCRRP), “Minecraft Underwater World,” “Biorock” and Qualti AC to create Cozumel’s only Reef Restoration program and project.
EXPLORA CARIBE TOURS TAKES LEADERSHIP POSITION IN SUSTAINABLE PRACTICES In an important milestone, Explora Caribe Tours has achieved the International Silver Certification through EarthCheck, the world’s leading environmental management and professional services group for the travel and tourism industry, becoming the first company tour operator to achieve this goal in the island of Cozumel. 70 THIRD QUARTER 2019 | TRAVEL & CRUISE
BELIZE, A CURIOUS PLACE Strikingly beautiful and captivating; hub for adventure, relaxation, history and culture; great cuisine; friendly people and intriguing ancient Mayan cities. Fascinating underground cave tubing tours; world renowned snorkeling and diving sites, home of the second world largest barrier reef and the Great Blue Hole - the perfect vacation paradise. Belize, a curious Place!
CHUKKA GOOD HOPE ADVENTURE PARK & FALLS WINS ‘ATTRACTION OF THE YEAR 2019’ The Jamaica Hotel & Tourist Association awarded Chukka Good Hope Adventure Park & Falls ‘Attraction of the Year 2019’. Located only 15 minutes from the Falmouth Cruise Port, Good Hope is Jamaica’s largest nature-adventure multi-generational park, with an unparalleled variety of thrilling adventures, cultural experiences and leisure activities.
NEW BACARDI EXPERIENCE AT PORT OF SAN JUAN Cruising thru San Juan? Check out the new Bacardi experience in the Pier 4 duty free store for a great range of Bacardi rums and cocktail memorabilia. Try a Bacardi Mojito at the bar and
remember to buy your personalized bottle of Bacardi Carta Blanca to mix your own cocktails. JAXPORT OVERVIEW Carnival Cruise Lines’ 2,056-passenger Carnival Ecstasy offers year-round service from Jacksonville, Florida with fourand five-day cruises to The Bahamas. Cruises sail from the JAXPORT Cruise Terminal in Jacksonville, conveniently located for guests driving from cities across the Southeast U.S. and for passengers flying into Jacksonville International Airport ( JIA).
ZIELIA.COM Zielia.com is the cruise industry’s first comprehensive digital database of port and destination information for itinerary planners, port and shore excursion
professionals and other cruise executives. “Zielia is what we have been waiting for; brilliant and long-overdue” is how one itinerary planner put it. Check it out at www.zielia.com.
AMERIMED Amerimed’s operations in the Mexican Caribbean extend beyond our hospitals. For the last six years, Amerimed has provided 24/7 Emergency Medical Services within Cancún’s International Airport. Spanning three terminals and an FBO, it is the second-busiest airport in Mexico with over 25 million passengers last year. Please visit www.amerimedhospitals.com
PORT OF SAN DIEGO Discover the Port of San Diego’s Wonderfront, where you can fulfill your heart’s desires. Be amazed by the unique sights, sounds and flavors across 34 miles of the dynamic San Diego Bay waterfront. From epic events to intimate concerts, world-class restaurants and stunning coastal views, there’s always something to explore! A YEAR OF FIRSTS FOR STARBOARD Starboard Cruise Services is midway through an impressive roster of exciting transformational retail launches. The Miami-based retailer, part of LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton, has launched or refit shops on some of the industry’s most important ships, including Costa Venezia, Royal Caribbean’s Spectrum of the Seas, Carnival Sunrise and Dream Cruises’ Explorer Dream. The global leader will add several more high-profile launches by year’s end, including the debut of Costa Smeralda and Norwegian Encore and the retail renovation of Royal Caribbean’s Oasis of the Seas.
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Tikal is the true heart of the Mayan world being one of the most important cities of such amazing civilization, give yourself a chance to be in this magic place full of knowledge of life, nature and cience.
Cordillera Central, Puerto Rico
YOUR NEIGHBOR WITH THE BACKYARD THAT NEVER ENDS Have we met yet? We should. With us, you’ll spend the day hiking in the Central Mountains or kayaking through one of our bioluminescent bays where the water lights up beneath you. From swimming under waterfalls to ziplining through the rainforest, our backyard is your playground. Best of all, we’re right next door. Find out more at DiscoverPuertoRico.com.