The beauty of embarking on a cruise is the ability to travel almost anywhere that has a coastline. Stunning cities, mesmerising historical landmarks, beautiful beaches, isolated islands and much more can all be easily accessed via a holiday on the seas. This extends into some of the more difficult to access areas around the world, with guests seeking a wider range of immersive experiences.
The current conception of this to consumers is often revolved around a little e more legwork and the willingness to get down and dirty. Obviously, given that the average of a cruise passenger is currently between the high 50’s and low 60’s, this will not appeal to all. And that is where the concept of luxury expedition comes in…
A number of lines are operating itineraries that provide passengers with opportunities to enjoy these experiences aboard luxurious custom-built vessels that were never previously imaginable. Six-star ships complete with all-suite accommodations, private balconies, luxurious public areas and delicious dining options – while also being capable of taking passengers to a range of less-accessible destinations.
One of the best examples of this type of vessel is Scenic Cruises’ Scenic Eclipse, a brand new luxury discovery yacht that is due to launch in 2018. The new vessel – which will also be Scenic’s first ocean-bound ship - will offer luxurious interior designs and onboard features that have become synonymous with the line’s river cruise vessels in recent years. However, with additions such as two onboard helicopters and a private submarine, Scenic has proven that it is possible to blend expedition with luxury.
Coming from a line that has previously been known for delivering luxurious river cruise experiences, this indicates a huge change in market trends. It is also worth noting that the vessel will be designed for an Ice Class 1A Super rating and a Polar Class 6 rating, which will enable it to navigate safely through the challenging waters of the Arctic and Antarctic regions.
A few years ago, this concept of combining luxury and expedition cruising sectors was never even imaginable and yet it has already catered for much more than just a niche market. More and more cruise lines are attempting to fill this gap in the market and we can expect luxury expedition cruising to be a topic of much discussion into the New Year.
While this type of cruising is certainly proving to be appealing, it is also important to preserve and protect this preciously fragile natural environment. Hurtigruten is one of the leading lines when it comes to expedition-style cruising and has announced plans to launch a new vessel, MS Roald Amundsen, in 2018. This new build will be a pioneering vessel due to the fact it will become one of the first hybrid icebreaker ships, which will make cruising in Antarctica much more sustainable.
Furthermore, luxury yacht line, Ponant, announced plans this week to build a brand new electric hybrid icebreaker cruise ship – which will become the first ship of its kind to be powered by Liquefied Natural Gas. Many cruise lines outside of the luxury expedition sector are also looking into the possibility of adapting their new builds so that they are powered by this environmentally-friendly fuel, which produces 0% emissions.
Cruising is continuing to grow at a phenomenal rate and there really has never been a better time to be a part of it all. GoCruise offers a unique opportunity to become a part of it all, giving you the chance to own your own franchise business. Earning competitive rates of commission on every booking you secure, we will provide all the training and resources to ensure your business is a success.
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