– Avalon Myanmar – Myanmar River Cruise – April 2017
*Azamara Club Cruises – Azamara Journey – Singapore to Dubai (April 8, 2018)
* Azamara Quest – Southeast Asia and Japan (February 2015)
– How Close to Luxury Can Celebrity’s Smallest Ship Get? – Part I
– How Close to Luxury Can Celebrity’s Smallest Ship Get? Part II
– How Close to Luxury Can Celebrity’s Smallest Ship Get? Part III
– How Close to Luxury Can Celebrity’s Smallest Ship Get? Part IV
– How Close to Luxury Can Celebrity’s Smallest Ship Get? – Some Final Observations and Thoughts
– The Prologue to the Travelogue
– The Adventure Begins…With a Bump or Two
– Settling In Made Easy
– Luxury Touches Here, There and OK, Not, Everywhere…But There Are Lots of Them!
– Asian Flair Onboard and On Shore
– Private Tours, Israel and Conflicts in Perceptions and Perspective
Celebrity Equinox 2009 – Egypt…Impressive and Depressing
– Dining With the Captain and the Reidel Wine Seminar
– The Last Dinner (Tuscan Grille) and Disembarkation
– What Happens When A Class Act Meets Highly Discounted Cruise Fare
– Lisbon to Monaco: Crystal As a “Move Up” & “Move Over” Luxury Option – Part I
– Lisbon to Monaco: Crystal As a “Move Up” & “Move Over” Luxury Option – Part II
– Lisbon to Monaco: Crystal As a “Move Up” & “Move Over” Luxury Option – Part III
– Lisbon to Monaco: Crystal As a “Move Up” & “Move Over” Luxury Option – Part IV (Food & Wine!)
– Princess Cruises Doesn’t Treat You Like Royalty; Celebrity Cruises Does! Which is a Better Value for the Upscale Cruise Guest? Part I
– Celebrity Silhouette vs. -Royal Princess – Which Is A Better Value For The Upscale Cruise Guest? Part II: The Standard Veranda Staterooms
– Celebrity Silhouette vs. Royal Princess – Which Is A Better Value For The Upscale Cruise Guest? Part III: Treating You Right From The Start
– Celebrity Silhouette vs. Royal Princess – Which Is A Better Value For The Upscale Cruise Guest? Part IV: The Wine Lists Speak Volumes (As Do The Beverage Packages)
Regent Seven Seas Voyager – August 2017
– Italy and Corisca 2014 – Part I
– Italy and Corisca 2014 – Part II (Getting There, The Stateroom and First Impressions)
– Italy and Corisca 2014 – Part III (“You Can’t Teach Five Star Service” and Bonafacio, Corsica)
– Italy and Corisca 2014 – Part IV (Calvi, Monaco, Portofino, Porto Azzurro…and Stale Bread)
– Italy and Corisca 2014 – Part V (My Last Day…and How The Chef’s Team Makes It Happen)
Fincantieri is the Italian government controlled company which owns and operates a number of Italian shipyard involved in the construction of both cruise ships and superyachts.
Last week Fincantieri was “forced” (not my word) according to Lloyd’s List, the preeminent shipping publication, to deny that it had lost as cancelled the contract to build the second Oceania new build. This malstrom was apparently started by some local metalworkers unions over concerns the loss would adversely affect them. Fincantieri, however, remains fairly tight-lipped, as there is little question that there are ongoing discussions with Prestige Cruise Holdings over timing and price renegotiations.
Fincantieri is also subject to pressure because the superyacht order book, in addition to the cruise line order book, is getting scarily thin. Orders are beign cancelled, others delayed and new orders just are not happening. Because Fincantieri has put so much effort and money into getting its previously old and unused shipyards up and running…and then expanding its facilities further…just to keep up with the demand…is faced with the bottom falling out and no sign that there will be a quick recovery.
To that end, earlier this month Fincantieri chose not to exercise its option to increase its interest in the large ship repair facility Lloyd Werft (in Breman, Germany) and has apparently shut down talks to take over Grand Bahama Shipyard in the Caribbean; quashing its previous plans to become a worldwide ship buiilding and repair conglomerate. It did, however, complete its purchase of Manitowoc, a Wisconsin, USA based company that builds and repairs mid-sized ships for various branches of the US military.
With all of this swirling around, the Italian government announced two days ago that may soon approve the sale of a portion of its interest in Fincantieri to private interests. Obviously, what that does is provide Fincantieri with a quick boost of cash while aleviating pressure from the Italian government, which doesn’t have the cash available to meet all of Fincantieri’s present needs.
I am not sure if this is “the tip of the iceberg” or the beginning of a successful retrenching that may allow Fincantieri to eventually exploit the weaknesses the shipbuilding and repair industries are is suffering from. What I am sure is that this is but the beginning of the story.