– 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)
In 2006 Seabourn contracted with V.Ships to operate its technical and marine operations on its three ships. This created a good bit of upset with the non-hotel crew and officers and, quite frankly, puzzled me. Well, obviously Seabourn was not happy with the V.Ship operations and/or costs. (Neither was Prestige Cruise Holdings re: Oceania and Regent who will take back its operations when its contract with V.Ships expires in November.)
Seabourn has finished the process of receiving the regulatory approvals to move the operations in house. While, as with Prestige Cruise Holdings, the politic thing to state is that with a larger stable of ships (three on the way) the efficiencies make in house the way to go, Larry Rapp, Vice President of Fleet Operations, made a couple of comments that – at least to me – make it clear that V.Ship was not going a good enough job either in communications or performance.
He stated that this significant change will result in closer oversight of the maintenance and safety. ‘That is not to imply that there were any shortcomings in the past… However, we are expected to comply in detail not only to all relevant statutory requirements, but also to Carnival standards as well. Having our operation in house makes achieving that standard far more efficient.’ Mr. Rapp also commented that was a desire for direct control of marine and technical matters.
Those comments indicates to me that there were probably some “discussions” by Seabourn about certain things not being good enough and V.Ship asserting it complied with the required statutory standards so it was “good enough”. I have no information that was, in fact, the case; it just seems to me to be the obvious conclusion…especially when the relationship ended so quickly.
Reading further between the lines, it seems to me that V.Ship took on huge responsibilities and, as short term profit was its motivation, it utilized its contracted for control over the technical and operational matters in order to create an immediate profit center for itself (hence the application of the minimum standards required) rather than a long term relationship based upon exceeding those minimum performance standards (coupled with excellent communication) that ultimately would have grown its operations…and therefore its long term profits.
I also think it is interesting that V.Ship personnel have migrated to both Seabourn and PCH. This makes me believe V.Ship had the talent pool and that the conflicts arose on the financial side of things.
One other interesting point: As Seabourn and PCH literally are “jumping V.Ships” (sorry!), Silversea is on the gangway about to sign up with V.Ship not only for its technical and marine operations, but for V.Ships to oversea its new build operations; migrating some of its staff over to V.Ship. Interesting.
Goldring Travel LLC
12177 Business Park Drive, Suite 6
Truckee, California 96161
US: (877) 2GO-LUXURY (877-246-5898)
UK: 020 8133 3450
AUS: (07) 3102 4685
Everywhere Else: +1 530-562-9232