Tag Archives: Virgin Cruise Ships

Sir Richard Branson pulls out scissors, cuts off stuffed suits’ $200 silk ties

You have to love the guy. Typical Branson press conference, this time about Virgin Cruises taking to the water in 2020.

The Italian shipbuilder stuffed shirts (who aren’t bad guys at all) standing there in their US$2000 suits with two hundred dollar silk ties. Sir Richard arrives in his helicopter with two lovelies – and he’s wearing red short pants, a Virgin Cruises Captain’s shirt, hat and not much else except red runners with no socks.

So half way through the press conference Sir Richard comes up with a pair of scissors, says he can’t stand executive ties and starts cutting.

Yup, I love the guy.

But don’t forget in all this: Barbados must get a piece of this. If our government can’t get at least one of the new Virgin ships based out of B’town, it will be a sad and dark day.

 

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Will Sir Richard Branson’s Virgin Cruises base at least one new cruise ship in Barbados?

Sir Richard Branson - lucky old bastard!

Sir Richard Branson – lucky old bastard! *

Adrian Loveridge - tourism expert, hotel owner

Adrian Loveridge – tourism expert, hotel owner

While the concept was rolled out some time ago, the details were largely announced in a media conference which took place at the Museum Park in Miami last week.

Never shy of dominating the global limelight, Sir Richard Branson announced that Virgin Cruises should have three brand new Italian built ships in the water by 2020, each with a mid-size capacity of 2,800 passengers and around 110,000 gross tons. www.virgincruises.com

I will not insult readers to guess the planned colour of these new vessels and it perhaps sets new parameters for the cruising industry, opening it up to a whole new market with a brand that is among the strongest on the planet. The placard statement ‘let’s make waves’ emblazoned on the arrival helicopter carrying Sir Richard said it all.

Virgin will have a huge marketing advantage by having its own airline and through the joint holding it has with Delta Airlines, the United States second largest carrier.

The first ship will operate out of the Port of Miami, the cruise capital of the world, with a quoted throughput of 4.8 million multi-day passengers in 2014 operating 7 day Caribbean cruises.

But there is an incredible opportunity for Barbados – if we can make it happen. With the Delta flights servicing two of the largest airports in the USA, Atlanta and New York and Virgin Atlantic proving the only scheduled carrier to operating direct flights out of two major British hubs, Gatwick and Manchester, could the second or third ship, homeport from Barbados?

This would give travellers a myriad of holiday options. Fly from the UK to Barbados, cruise to another island and fly back to England from there. All with the same airline and cruise brand.

By enticing Virgin Cruises to Barbados, it could directly benefit us in so many ways. Stay and cruise options, provisioning and higher employment on the ships with more ‘locals’ are among the potential.

So what could persuade Virgin Cruises to position one ship here?

Of course there are historic precedents of subsidising selected tourism partners.   Continue reading

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Thank you to all who work over Christmas taking care of our visitors

shepherdschristmas.jpg

Good possibilities for 2015

Adrian Loveridge - tourism expert, hotel owner

Adrian Loveridge – tourism expert, hotel owner

Around this time of the year it is difficult not to spare a few thoughts for all those involved in tourism, directly or otherwise, who sacrifice their quality precious time with family to take care of our visitors over the Christmas period. Of course they are not alone with other sectors including the essential services assuming the same responsibility.

As someone, through work commitments, that has only celebrated a personal Christmas four times during the past 40 years, my thanks and admiration to you all for your dedication.

There have been many predictions and projections made recently over an anticipated increase in long stay visitors in 2015 when compared with this year.  Continue reading

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