CARNIVAL CRUISE LINES saw a continued shakeup in its top ranks. Maurice Zarmati, a 36-year veteran of sales at Carnival Cruise Lines, was named president and CEO of Costa Cruise Lines North America, another Carnival Corp.-owned company. Zarmati assumes his new role at Costa on March 31, where he will be responsible for sales and marketing efforts for Costa's North and Central American regions. The Costa role was most recently held by Lynn Torrent, who left Costa to join Carnival Cruise Lines as its senior vice president of sales and customer service. Roberto Martinoli, Carnival's executive vice president of operations, meanwhile told the line he would leave on March 7. Martinoli is moving back to Monaco and returning to the consulting business.
CARNIVAL CORP. is also losing an executive: Jack Anderson, vice president of marketing for Carnival Corp. and the executive director of the World's Leading Cruise Lines, a marketing identity for Carnival's North American cruise brands, is retiring at the end of March. He has been with Carnival Corp. since 1999; prior to that he spent 25 years with Carnival Corp. brand Holland America Line.
NCL CORP. blamed higher interest expenses and the weakening U.S. dollar for its $133 million fourth-quarter loss and its $227 million loss for full-year 2007. The numbers were worse than 2006's fourth quarter and full year losses despite a 9.9% increase in revenue in 2007, to $2.2 billion. NCL said that its fourth-quarter revenue was up 10.7%, to $497.5 million, which it attributed to a 4% increase in capacity days and an 11% increase in net yields, which it said was driven by higher ticket pricing, improved onboard spending and increased occupancy.
OCEANIA AND SILVERSEA revealed details about their upcoming new ships:
• Silversea will rename its newly acquired expedition ship the Prince Albert II, in tribute to Prince Albert of Monaco, and said the vessel would begin operations June 12 from London. The ship will spend an inaugural summer season in the Arctic Circle, Iceland and Greenland and reposition to South America and Antarctica for fall and winter.
• Oceania said that its two newbuilds, scheduled for delivery in 2010 and 2011, would accommodate 1,252 passengers in 626 cabins and suites; the line said that 96% of the cabins would have balconies. Each ship will have six open-seating restaurants, Oceania said, and the vessels will be "awash in rich, dark woods, Italian marble, lustrous granite, fine wool carpets and sumptuous leather."
CRYSTAL AND OCEANIA have opened the books on their 2009 sailings, with an emphasis on overnight port calls.
• Crystal in 2009 is sailing 57 cruises to 185 ports on cruises of seven to 106 days. Its two ships will sail in Asia and offer overnight calls in Hong Kong; Shanghai; Osaka and Kobe, Japan; and Bangkok. The line also will include overnight calls on most of its Mediterranean sailings, in cities such as Barcelona, Spain; Sorrento and Venice, Italy; Istanbul, Turkey; and Monaco.
• Oceania, meanwhile, detailed its Europe deployment: It will position its three ships in Europe for summer 2009, sailing the Mediterranean and Greek Isles and Northern Europe. Oceania will offer 56 European voyages ranging from 10 to 30 days and calling at more than 80 different ports, including five new destinations for the line: Hellesylt, Norway; Fowey, England; Biarritz, France; Koper, Slovenia; and Split, Croatia. The line said it was offering more overnight stays than in previous years.
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