Silversea plots expansion

SILVERSEA Cruises has wasted no time since its two-thirds acquisition by Royal Caribbean Cruises Limited, announcing orders last month for three new ships along with a significant upgrade to its onboard offering. The company has kicked off a major national roadshow this month, with the Silversea team including newly appointed managing director, Adam Armstrong, showcasing the line’s 2019/20 program to travel agents and members of the Silversea Venetian Society loyalty program, as well as detailing the ongoing development of the Silversea fleet and on-board product.

Two of the additional ships are part of a yet-to-be-detailed “Evolution Class” being constructed by German shipyard Meyer Werft. The first of these is scheduled for delivery in 2022, described by Meyer Werft managing director Tim Meyer as a “new generation of environmentally friendly ships in the ultra-luxury cruise market”. Also on order, from Dutch shipbuilder De Hoop, is a new expedition ship to be named Silver Origin, which will replace Silver Galapagos in the Galapagos Islands once it is delivered in March 2020.

Royal Caribbean chairman and CEO, RIchard Fain, said “we are excited to get to work helping Silversea grow and realise its ambitions. There is tremendous potential in the ultra-luxury and expedition markets of the cruise industry, and we believe discerning travellers will embrace the exciting designs Silversea is imagining for them”. The excitement was echoed by Silversea executive chairman Manfredi Lefebvre d’Ovidio, who said the company was “redefining the concept of immersive travel”.

Armstrong noted that the 2020/21 Silversea program featured a whopping 572 destinations in 84 countries — and complimentary air and transfers are being included on virtually every itinerary, along with business class air upgrades from just $699 each way. The offering includes the inaugural season of the new Silver Moon which will debut from Trieste, Italy on 6 August 2020. The entire Silversea “classic” fleet is being upgraded to the same standard as the flagship Silver Muse, in a process described as “Musification” which will be completed by the end of next year. Australians will have the opportunity to experience the latest product from next month, when Muse makes her way to Australia for the first time. Armstrong hailed the deep pockets of the company’s new majority owner, saying “all that investment by Royal Caribbean is really elevating Silversea to be the premium ultra-luxury brand on the seven seas”.