Cruise industry booms
AS ANOTHER wave season draws to a close, it is interesting to reflect on the highlights and look ahead. In the last few months we welcomed Ovation of the Seas, the largest ship ever to visit Australia and Seabourn Encore, that line’s newest ultra-luxury addition.
We have seen more visits to regional ports such as Eden and Mooloolaba and increasing southern Australian itineraries to ports such as Esperance, Kangaroo Island, and Burnie balancing the more traversed routes up the eastern seaboard.
Expedition cruising has become increasingly popular as passengers show more interest in visiting destinations such as the Tiwi Islands or Thursday Island.
Recognising the importance of the luxury market to Australia, Crystal Cruises opened an office in Sydney and Azamara’s “azamazing” evenings continued to delight passengers with cultural performances and bespoke events.
Looking ahead we are excited for the first ever P&O winter sailing to Tasmania visiting Dark MOFO.
Debut visits are also on the horizon - NCL’s Norwegian Jewel will be based in the region from October 2017. Viking Ocean Cruises will enter the Australian market in 2018 and Majestic Princess will homeport in Australia from September 2018.
Further into the future, MSC Cruises will return to Australia with the Magnifica in early 2019.
Our region continues to deliver as a cruise destination and we are excited about the opportunities to support the cruise lines as they develop new itineraries and bring new ships to our shore.