Seabourn Cruise Line is launching its newest ship with a huge party at the Marina Bay Cruise Centre in Singapore – underscoring the award winning luxury brand’s hunt for more Asian passengers.
The Seabourn Encore will sail straight to Singapore from the Venetian shipyard where she is being built, and will be joined at the Marina Bay Cruise Centre by the Seabourn Sojourn.
After the January 7 party, the Sojourn will sail in Asia while the Encore will sail in Australia – both within reach of Asian cruisers in the region.
John Delaney, Senior Vice President of Global Marketing and Sales, told ASEAN Cruise News Asia is a “hot” destination and Seabourn was seeking to grow in the region.
Hence the amazing launch party in Singapore.
“We have been given permission to take over the Marina Bay Cruise Centre, we will have both ships in together and we are planning a wonderful party for all 1,050 guests to celebrate and it is really going to celebrate Asian culture.
“There will be local entertainment, local musicians, we’re working very closely with the Singapore Tourism Bureau to ensure guests get the best cultural highlights of Singapore, with pre and post tours at the beautiful gardens at the bay.
“We’re also looking to do something with the sky gardens at the Marina Bay Sands Hotel, which will an exclusive sail away party where guests will buy a package, attend the inaugural and see the two ships sail out together.”
Mr Delaney was speaking aboard the Seabourn Odyssey in Sydney, during a weekend of high-end cruising in which Ponant, Azamara and Silversea were all represented.
He outlined the new offerings from the Encore, including a Thomas Keller restaurant and the luxurious Wintergarden Suites.
He said Seabourn had rolled out 30 new Southeast Asian ports in the past three years. He felt the Southeast Asian cruiser was particularly likely to appreciate Seabourn’s particularly brand of luxury cruising.
Earlier, during a presentation, he pointed out the average price paid of a Seabourn cruise had risen from US$11,000 in 2011, to $17,000 this year and $18,000 in 2017.
But it still represented value, he said. A Thomas Keller meal on land, for instance, costs US$400 a head. On Seabourn, it’s included.
The luxury segment of cruising would grow capacity 45 per cent by 2018, showing the enormous potential of this lucrative area of cruise.
He said Seabourn would have an emphasis on agent training, with the seven-module training program available online at the company website.
The Seabourn Encore will operate two pre-inaugural cruises in December 2016 along the coasts of Israel, Arabia, India and Southeast Asia, before arriving in Singapore for its naming ceremony on Jan. 7, 2017, and official 10-day inaugural voyage.
Seabourn Encore will spend the remainder of its maiden season operating 16-day voyages in Australia and New Zealand. While the inaugural sailing is sold out, there is still space on the other maiden season voyages.
Seabourn Sojourn will offer voyages in the Far East from mid-November 2016, starting with an 18-day voyage through the Holy Land and Arabia and a 17-day sailing through Arabia and India to Singapore.
The ship’s Asian season begins with a 16-day holiday voyage round-trip from Singapore to Malaysia and Myanmar, where the ship will stay in Yangon (Rangoon) for three days and give time for guests to explore the city and the 2,000-plus temples at Bagan and the city of Mandalay. In 2017, Seabourn Sojourn will offer the line’s 14-day Vietnam & Thailand voyage from Singapore to Hong Kong, which will alternate with a new 14-day voyage visiting the Philippines, China and Borneo.
Guests may combine these two sailings for a new 28-day cruise. In March, Seabourn Sojourn will embark on 18-day voyages between Hong Kong and Kobe, Japan, encompassing new ports in China, Japan and Korea. These have variations, such as an overnight stay at Xingang for visiting Beijing on one cruise and a three-day visit at Shanghai on another. In addition, the voyage was planned to coincide with the cherry blossom season in Japan. Another voyage on the schedule is a 21-day cruise in May from Kobe to Seattle through Japan and across the North Pacific. Guests may combine sailings for an extended 89-day Pacific Rim Exploration voyage departing Singapore on March 4, 2017, and arriving at Seattle on May 31, 2017.