– Avalon Myanmar – Myanmar River Cruise – April 2017
Avalon Waterways – Myanmar – Part VI (Kya Hnyat to Kyauk Myaung)
Avalon Waterways – Myanmar – Part IX (The Ship: Avalon Myanmar)
Avalon Waterways – Myanmar (Burma) – Reflections: “Isn’t This Amazing!?”
*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)
I have had a few very interesting industry-insider onversations as of late concerning the rapid expansion of Seabourn and Oceania cruise lines. They have been taking some very different approaches and, to be sure, there is one that Oceania took that I just new would be coming…but Oceania denied it UNTIL NOW!
Oceania announced today that it is chartering the Insignia to Hapag-Lloyd starting in the spring of 2012 (just a year from now). This coincides with the arrival of Oceania’s second larger ship, the Regatta.
What this does is reduce Oceania’s capacity (seeing the softness in its 2011 sailings to Alaska for example and the issues Seabourn has with too much new capacity too quickly) in order to prevent issues and it significantly reduces its operational and staffing costs…with many of its Insignia crew obviously being targeted to staff the new ship or rotate to the other Oceania ships as that staff is used for Riviera.
If you think about it, Oceania will then have a net increase in births of less than 50% of what was expected and that really is a boost for a company with a focus on a quality product and a strong bottom line.
You may recall that I have wondered for quite a while how Oceania is going to market two totally different types of ships (the R-Class having smaller cabins while the Marina-Class have near suite accommodations and far more dining options). I have gone so far as to conjecture that Oceania and Regent Seven Seas will, in one way or another, combine as there is far more symmetry between Regent’s Voyager and Mariner than the R-Class ships. One year ago to the day I wrote Hello Oceania Marina…and, Quite Possibly: Bon Voyage, Regent Seven Seas. Last month I wrote: Oceania Cruises to Acquire Regent Seven Seas Cruises: A Theory?
Unlike Seabourn that has a clear symmetry with all-suite ships and consistent (if different) venues and, thus, a consistent market, Oceania is obviously faced with a conflict in markets that goes far beyond the Inside Cabin to Suite concept on a ship to a conflict as between the ships themselves. If you look at Celebrity, it has made a clear focus on the Solstice-class and is in the process of ridding itself of its older hardware and “Solsticizing” its Millennium-class ships. That simply is not a viable option for Oceania as the differences are just to great.
So is Oceania in the process of jettisoning its older ships? And is it doing so in a way that it makes sure those ships do not become much in the way of competition? Hapag-Lloyd seems to fit that model.
We shall see.
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