Azamara is dropping "Club Cruises" from its name
and doubling down on its commitment to destination-focused cruising.
The line is touting an increased selection of guided pre-
and post-cruise tours of three to six days to be offered on every cruise
itinerary. Luxury tour operator Cox & Kings will operate more than
three-quarters of Azamara's tours, and brands like Micato Safaris will be
Azamara has for several years been carving out its niche in
its focus on destinations. CEO Larry Pimentel said it offers longer port stays
and more overnights than other cruise lines. Now, the number and variety of pre-
and post-cruise tours has been greatly expanded to about 1,700 total tours.
"We are venturing beyond the sea, big time,"
Three tiers of programs will be offered. The AzAmazing
Journeys are designed as small-group, "intimate, once-in-a-lifetime
experiences" in a destination's culture and geography, with five-star or
boutique hotel stays. The Land Journeys is a larger-group program with four-
and five-star hotels. And Stay Local programming gives travelers a deep dive
into an embarkation city or region with a two- to three-day stay.
Azamara said all land tours include transfers, tour
directors, explorations led by local experts such as geologists or wildlife
trackers, and most breakfasts and some meals.
As for the name change, the decision was twofold. Pimentel
said that the word "cruises" was too limiting for the number of tours
Azamara now offers. And he said that in some European markets there was a
perception that "club" was looked at as "a discount club."
He added: "When we talk to guests who love us the most,
they didn't use the name 'Azamara Club Cruises.' ... The agency community, they'd
say, 'I'm booking Azamara.'"
Azamara has redesigned its logo, and a new brochure is
rolling out for the trade. There will be online agent training for the new
products. Azamara sales reps will be going on the road with seminars.