By Mike Kelly The Seven Seas Explorer will ply the Mediterranean until late this year, when it will begin sailing out of Miami. MONTE CARLO, Monaco — It takes a bit of nerve to brag that something of yours is the best, the richest, the biggest, or any other superlative that might come to mind. But that’s exactly what Frank Del … Read more
Up in the Explorer’s top, $10,000-per-night Regent Suite, which occupies much of Deck 14, travel agent Bob Newman aka “CruiseExpertBob” was wide-eyed and smiling so hard he could hardly talk.
Cruise ships are continually upping the ante with specialty restaurants that feature international dishes, celebrity chefs, intimate venues, innovative menus and all-round delicious food.
Cruises are raising the bar on their offerings for group travelers by Andrea Doyle (Pictured) Travelers can dive into the ocean’s depths with Crystal Cruises’ deep-sea submersible According to Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA), 24 million passengers are expected to sail this year, up from 15 million just 10 years ago. Part of this growth is thanks to the fact … Read more
Differentiate yourself as an expert
Del Rio suggests that you narrow the portfolio of brands you represent so you can be an expert. Who wants to deal with an amateur with a non-informed, or worse, misinformed travel advisor? Market your expertise and your willingness to serve your customers aggressively.
“There are still misconceptions. There are still a lot of people who haven’t cruised or cruised for decades, and it’s the only one they remember. Education on how the ships have changed is a big point.” Freed agrees, “The old perception is you are sticking me in the main theatre.”
Infused with a bigger bankroll following its $550 million purchase by Genting Hong Kong last year, Crystal Cruises whipped up widespread agent interest with its February announcement about possibly resurrecting America’s classic liner, the SS United States, launched in 1952. Crystal signed an exclusive purchase option agreement with the SS United States Conservancy to possibly bring the ship into compliance with the latest standards and return the vessel to service as an 800-passenger luxury liner. The once proud ship still holds the coveted Blue Riband as the fastest passenger liner in regular service to cross the Atlantic Ocean.
If you’re like most cruisers, you spend time talking cruising with others who love taking to the rivers and the oceans. Here’s something you might be able to stump them with, as a “Did you know?”
A luxury cruise renaissance is on its way as Crystal Cruises, Regent Seven Seas Cruises, Seabourn Cruise Line and Silversea Cruises all expand their operations from now into 2018 and beyond.
The extravagant interiors of the 750-passenger ship are currently being readied for a big debut by three firms: ICRAVE, RTKL, and Tillberg Design. The design is filled with luxury materials, from mahogany and crystal to cashmere and Murano handblown glass.