Azamara appoints Dondra Ritzenthaler new CEO

The former Celebrity marketing executive will take up the role in May, following Carol Cabezas' abrupt exit.

Azamara has appointed new executive leadership, with Dondra Ritzenthaler named incoming Chief Executive Officer, replacing Carol Cabezas.

Ritzenthaler will begin at Azamara in May, with Chair Dan Hanrahan to provide day-to-day leadership and oversight of the team until then, assuming the responsibility from Cabezas.

The new Chief Executive was most recently Celebrity Cruises Senior Vice President of Sales Trade Support & Services for the Americas.

Prior to her 20 years in the cruise industry, Ritzenthaler spent nearly two decades with American Airlines in a number of sales and marketing leadership roles.

“Azamara provides a unique and exciting opportunity within the luxury cruise space, and I am thrilled to have the opportunity to lead the company into its next chapter,” Ritzenthaler said.

“I am looking forward to working with the talented team and their travel partners to better serve the customer base and grow the Azamara brand.”

Azamara has also named a new Chief Financial Officer, Alain Ferzli, who has joined effective immediately.

He too has more than 20 years of significant experience driving profitable growth in the cruise sector, including having served as the acting Chief Financial Officer for Virgin Voyages, among other leading roles within the industry.

“Our team has worked diligently to maintain a solid foundation for Azamara amid unique industry-wide challenges over the last several years,” Hanrahan enthused.

“Dondra and Alain’s deep knowledge of and experience leading cruise lines will support the shift of our focus to expanding our business and realising Azamara’s full potential.”

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