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15 May 2018

BY Tom Parry


Azamara launches South Africa and new stateroom type for 2020

Azamara Club Cruises will offer South Africa and have its entire fleet sail a full summer season in Europe for the first time in 2020.


The line will also have its entire fleet sailing a full summer season in Europe for the first time

The line is also introducing a new stateroom category - Veranda Plus - featuring complimentary internet minutes, one night of specialty dining and priority embarkation.


“There are some customers who want as many things as possible looked after up front so we are trying to talk to them,” David Duff, commercial director UK and Ireland told TTG.


“I think it’s only around 48 rooms [of the kind] available for it so it’s only a portion of the balcony offering.


“We will trial it and see and if the demand is as such we will think maybe it should be expanded then we will look at that.”


Azamara will operate five ex-UK sailings from Southampton in 2020, as well as “a number of other” itineraries featuring UK calls.


“When we put [upcoming vessel] Azamara Pursuit on sale for 2018, we had two itineraries for ex-UK and they have had a really strong level of interest,” said Duff.


“That has really given us the confidence to invest further in that type of product.


“We’ve more than doubled the amount [of ex-UK sailings] we’ve had for 2018 - a big deal for us in the UK.


“From a UK point of view, there is a big opportunity. I think while you have a lot of brands doing ex-UK, in our space, it’s rare for more upmarket luxury lines to do that much [ex-UK] so we have got high expectations for that.”


Duff said the line wold also be offering a three-night short cruise from June 5-8, which will give Azamara “a good angle to hopefully put some trade onboard”.


As part of its South African programme, Azamara will offer six round trips out of Cape Town with Azamara Quest sailing the first half of the year from January 2020 and Azamara Journey arriving in the country in December.


“South Africa has been a passion now for a couple of years and Larry [Pimentel] has been really keen to get us down there,” Duff explained. “The third ship has opened that opportunity up for us.”

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