Azamara to make Australian debut

Azamara to make Australian debut
By admin

Royal Caribbean’s upmarket cruise line, Azamara, has revealed plans to visit Australia for the first time – but Sydney, Brisbane and Melbourne will not be among the initial ports of call.

The 694-passenger Azamara Quest will sail in local waters as part of a 14-night voyage between December 22, 2015 and January 5, 2016.

The Quest will sail from Bali to Australia and make calls at Thursday Island, Darwin, Cooktown, Port Douglas and ending in Cairns.

The cruise line has long spoken of its desire to visit Australia, which is now its third largest market.

Royal Caribbean commercial director Adam Armstrong told Travel Today last month the “when not if” arrival of Azamara Club Cruises would “complete the brand jigsaw” for the company.

Further itineraries in early 2016 will be released at a later date.

“Azamara Club Cruises is a hidden secret amongst savvy Australian cruisers,” RCL Cruises regional vice president Asia Pacific, Gavin Smith, said. “But even though its ships have never sailed in this region, Australians are now the third biggest nationality of guests onboard.

"It has long been our dream to bring an Azamara ship to Australian waters and our whole team is very excited to welcome Azamara Quest in 2015.”

Azamara president and chief executive, Larry Pimentel, said it was “particularly excited” to expand its itineraries to Australia.

Senior vice president Edie Bornstein told Travel Today in July that Australia could overtake the UK as Azamara's second largest source market this year. Australia's share of overall sales was "creeping up towards 20%", she said.

The full 2015 program contains 52 voyages on Azamara Quest and Azamara Journey ranging from five to 18 nights.

The ships will call at 203 ports in 62 countries with voyages covering South America, West Indies, Europe and the Far East in addition to Australia.

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