Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd, the parent group that owns Royal Caribbean International, Celebrity Cruises, Pullmantur Cruises, CDF Croisières de France and Azamara Club Cruises, released their new 2014/15 cruise brochure for the Middle East cruise market Thursday at a press conference in Dubai.
The new brochures for Royal Caribbean and Celebrity Cruises focus on destinations popular with Middle East-based cruisers. According to Helen Beck, Regional Sales Director for Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd, Europe is the most popular destination. With this in mind, Royal Caribbean will have six of their Celebrity Cruises cruise liners based in Europe and the Mediterranean operating what Helen described as “the youngest fleet in the region”. Celebrity Cruises’ European and Mediterranean itinerary includes 82 different cruises calling at more than 200 countries.
The group’s flagship cruise line, Royal Caribbean International, will have eight cruise ships cruising in Europe and the Mediterranean next year, including the largest cruise ship in the world, Oasis of the Seas – a leviathan of a ship that is more than a third of kilometre long, carries more than 8,000 passengers and crew and offers seven distinct onboard ‘neighborhoods’, as well as 45 separate activities, attractions and forms of entertainment.
Oasis of the Seas will be sailing two 5-night cruises from Spain, as well as a 7-night voyage from Barcelona to Rotterdam in the Netherlands, she will then return to the Caribbean with a trans-Atlantic crossing.
“Royal Caribbean is a market leader in the Middle East region,” Helen told Cruise Arabia. “We account for around 24% of the total Middle East market, which although small, with around 41,000 Middle East-based cruisers, is growing extremely fast.”
During the brochure launch event at the JW Marriot Marquis in Dubai, Lakshmi Durai, the Executive Director of Royal Caribbean Middle East, confirmed to Cruise Arabia that the group has seen double digit growth in the number of Middle East passengers taking to the sea in 2013.