GOOD NEWS FOR CRUISE: Booking rates and pricing
continue to be stable, according to A.G. Edwards analyst Tim
Conder. Close-in reservations (bookings made zero to three months
in advance) are strongest, Conder said, and long-term and group
bookings are strengthening. In the pricing arena, Conder said the
European market shows the most pricing strength over the past six
weeks, trumping the Caribbean and Alaska markets.
"HE JUST BOUGHT A BOAT," said CLIA chairman
Mark Conroy of recently departed CLIA president Jim Godsman, who
left the post after 17 years. "He had a good run and thought it
would be good timing." Bob Sharak, CLIA's vp-marketing and business
development, added the title of executive director, and will be in
the running to replace Godsman, Conroy said.
CLIA will put together a committee to take
stock of the industry group's current activities and goals, and to
plan its future direction. Representatives from CLIA's member
cruise lines will be part of the committee, but an official roster
still is in the works, Sharak said. The planning group will study,
among other things, where the organization should be
STAR CRUISES is getting ready to make a big
play for China. The Asia-based company said it was granted a
license by the Ministry of Transport and Communication of China to
permit Star ships to sail from Chinese ports to international
destinations. The line also said it is in discussions with
shipyards on the design of new ships to be placed in the Chinese
market. Star Cruises is the parent company of Norwegian Cruise
ASPIRING TIME-SHARE cruise line Romantic
Cruises said, although their deal to buy the Premier ship Rembrandt
fell through, they have their eye on purchasing a ship, to be
delivered to the company on or before Dec. 1. The mystery ship --
Romantic declined to reveal which ship it is buying -- is scheduled
for a June drydock, and Romantic slated its cruise program to begin
the first Sunday in December.
• The Olympia Explorer was christened Friday in Athens. The ship
has been sailing an eastern Med route since early May.
• NCL said their presence in the Caribbean next year will be their
largest ever, as the line sends seven ships to the region.
• SeaDream Yacht Club signed preferred supplier agreements with
four agency consortia: Virtuoso, Giants, American Express Travel
Services Network and Leisure Travel Group
• Crystal Cruises will sail its first short -- i.e. six- and
eight-day-cruises -- in the Mediterranean this fall.