Bosses at Silversea believe the line is “in a privileged position” to cope with potential social distancing measures onboard, owing to its fleet’s guest-to-space ratio and focus on expedition voyages.
During a media update on Tuesday (19 May) chief executive Roberto Martinoli predicted that as a result of carrying fewer passengers on smaller vessels, any new policies put in place would be “less invasive” to guests.
“For us, it’s going to be a change that is not so radical,” he added.
Echoing Martinoli, senior vice-president of hotel operations Damien O’Connor said Silversea would “continue to provide a luxurious experience but with safety of guest first in our mind”.
Using its current buffet experience as an example, O’Connor explained how guests did not serve themselves – greatly limiting contact with food and utensils.
He predicted there would “no doubt be less crew-to-guest contact” in future but stressed: “we’re not suggesting in any way that there will be less guest-to-guest contact.”
“If we do something wonderful today and we have to change it, we will make sure we do it as wonderfully the new way – there’s going to be new normal for us for sure. Anything we do have to change we will do it as luxurious as we do today – if not better."
O’Connor said adapting to new measures also gave Silversea the opportunity to “do some things we’ve been thinking about doing differently for a long time”.
Asked how the line’s expedition programme could change under future protocols, O’Connor said it would continue to be “a core part” of the line’s plans and offer Silversea an “advantage” to tap into current consumer trends to holiday to more isolated destinations.
“If you imagine the benefit of going to be a place that’s uninhabited where the only thing you might come into contact with is a penguin or an exotic bird - that’s is really assuring [to guests] that we’re not in a position to take something back to a country and we have very strict protocols in destinations such as the Galapagos,” he said.
Expanding on the demand for expedition, Barbara Muckermann, chief marketing officer, said the line had seen a "higher than average" number of guests opting for expedition, while UK and Ireland boss Peter Shanks, revealed Silversea’s Galapagos expeditions had been “selling extremely well” for 2021.