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Royal Caribbean makes progress on ship impact

24 Aug 2010

Royal Caribbean released its 2009 Stewardship Report yesterday and in it, quite a bit of information regarding the cruise line's environmentally conscious initiatives were outlined in it. Chief among them was Royal Caribbean cut fuel consumption by 3.7 percent in 2009 thanks to better designed ships, smarter sailing practices and energy efficiency measures that include installing solar window film in every ship in the fleet.

In 2009, roughly 4 million passengers traveled on a Royal Caribbean ship to 400 destinations and according to the report, 

The reduction of 3.7 percent less fuel per available passenger cruise day (APCD) beat a year-over-year reduction goal of 2 percent and consuming about 30,000 metric tons less in fuel than planned. Royal Caribbean compared this reduction in pollution to taking 13,000 mid-sized sedans off the road for a year.  Royal Caribbean boasted that since 2007, it has reduced fuel consumption by 7 percent per available passenger cruise day.

Royal Caribbean's immediate goal is to reduce fuel consumption per APCD by at least 2.5 percent each year and plans to set higher targets as new technologies develop.

Chairman and CEO Richard Fain commented in the report, "In our daily operations, we face two primary energy challenges: How to efficiently utilize clean, secure and affordable energy, and how to minimize our impact on the environment related to our air emissions and greenhouse gas (GHG) footprint."

Royal Caribbean will send more ships to Europe

24 Aug 2010

Royal Caribbean is planning on sending in the summer of 2011 as many cruise ships to Europe as ever before. Eleven ships will be in operation in the Mediterranean and Northern Europe, the company said in Frankfurt, Germany.

That's three more ships than in the current summer season 2010. Also announced, the Brilliance of the Seas in the winter season 2011/12  will be reinstated in the Persian Gulf. The first tour to/from Dubai begins in November 2011 and that two months earlier than in the coming winter season.
For the first time this side of the Atlantic, Liberty of the Seas with space for up to 3634 guests, will be traveling in the summer of 2011 the 339 meters long, . It belongs to the second largest class of ship in Royal Caribbean's fleet and will travel from Barcelona to the western Mediterranean. Also for the first time in Europe is Grandeur of the Seas (279 meters, 2446 passengers), with a base port in the Palma de Mallorca. In Genoa, Mariner of the Seas begins the third Euro-novice their travels.

More than 44,000 passengers pass through Malaga

23 Aug 2010

The port authority in Malaga, Spain reported in the months of June, July and August this year, a total of 44,030 passengers disembarked in the port, representing an increase of 9,169 percent over the same period last year.  Additionally, a total of 45,717 people embarked on a cruise ship from the port, a 11,105 percent increase over the same period of 2009.

Cruise companies like Royal Caribbean have been responsible for the increase in traffic to the city.

Royal Caribbean releases 2009 Stewardship Report

23 Aug 2010

Royal Caribbean has released its second annual Stewardship Report that highlights Royal Caribbean's safety, security, medical/public health and environmental efforts.

The 2009 Stewardship Report provides insight into Royal Caribbean's strategy in the areas of energy and air emissions, water and wastewater, waste and chemical management, community involvement and conservation, destinations and education.

Highlights of the report include an overview of the Save the Waves program that Royal Caribbean has been running since 1992 to help be more environmentally conscious in their fleet operations.

You can view the report here

Royal Caribbean to include the Britto Store on Allure of the Seas

23 Aug 2010

Royal Caribbean announced today details of another new venue that will call Allure of the Seas home – the very first Britto Concept store at sea by pop culture icon, Romero Britto.

The new Britto Store onboard Allure of the Seas will be located in Central Park and will be "an engaging and interactive space for guests to enjoy the color, innovation and spirit which encapsulates Britto's art".  In the store, you will find display artwork as well as smaller collectible pieces and sculptures of varying sizes.  Outside the store and just in front of the entrance, Britto's well-known butterflies will be placed around the gardens of Central Park to welcome guests into the store.

In addition, Britto will be creating two original pieces that will be exclusive to Royal Caribbean for guests to purchase.  The first is a custom painting which will be available as canvas Giclees, and the second will be a Royal Caribbean-inspired teddy bear. Romero Britto himself will attend Allure of the Seas' inaugural sailing on December 5, 2010, providing Britto fans a unique opportunity to interact with the artist in painting parties, autograph sessions and meet and greet events

Britto and Royal Caribbean have a history of working together, having started back in 2003 on Mariner of the Seas when the artist designed the pool deck for the then-brand new ship.

Within the store, which will be outfitted in black and white as a contrast to Britto's exceptionally colorful artwork, guests will have the opportunity to learn about the artist himself from a documentary of Britto's accomplishments as well as participate in wine and champagne events, art discussions, and other activities related to Romero Britto. A wide array of artwork, posters, giftware, collectibles and luggage will be available for purchase, ranging from original and limited edition Giclees, to tableware such as teapots and coasters; collectible figurines and sculptures; stationery; umbrellas; children's books; pet toys and much more. A modern day pop culture icon, Romero Britto creates contemporary masterpieces that evoke a spirit of hope and convey a sense of warmth. Embraced by the international community, Britto's paintings and sculptures are currently featured on five continents in more than 100 galleries worldwide. His original artwork, dubbed "the art of healing," brings together bright colors and playful themes with compositional elements of Cubism. Britto's artwork conveys an honesty that reflects his desire to use colors which exude happiness. His belief that "art should be accessible to all, and enjoyed by people of all ages" is a key reason his artwork appeals to art lovers ages eight to eighty.

Debate over new port in Belize heats up

23 Aug 2010

Earlier this month news came out of Royal Caribbean was considering building a new cruise port in the country of Belize near the village of Placencia.  Belize government officials confirmed last week that Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines wants to build a “tourism village” and the debate among locals is heating up over if it's a good idea or not.

The Belize Ministry of Tourism chief executive Mike Singh indicated that Royal Caribbean plans to build a facility on the southern point of the peninsula as “a welcome center for tendered cruise passengers.”

Once word of the plans came out, locals have voiced their opinions and often, their anger over the plan.  Many do not want cruise ships to stop in their village for fears of environmental damage, lack of infrastructure to support the tourists, and revenue from the cruises not impacting locals.  In just a blog entry on this site earlier, over 30 comments were generated mostly by locals who were against the plans.

"Placencia Village is way to small to receive passengers from cruise ships."

"Revenues from this will go to a very select few, not Placencia. Tour companies and the terminal will be owned by people who are already rich!"

"Stay away from Placencia! We have no sewage system, no hospital, no fire department, few police, one doctor, one nurse, maybe not enough water (we don't know) - we simply can't handle cruise ship passengers."

"Placencia won't be Placiencia anymore if mass tourismus comes there."

Opening a cruise port in Placencia can be good and bad.  On the plus side, the town gets worldwide exposure, additional revenue from tourists into the local economy and more home buyers from those looking for a vacation home.  On the down side, critics argue cruise ships simply bring day-trippers who don’t spend money and leave environmental damage in their wake.

There is also a report that this plan for Placencia is merely a negotiating tactic by Royal Caribbean to try to get a better deal.  Royal Caribbean is reportedly in a dispute over plans to build a second terminal in Belize City.

Cruises generate over $1 million for a city

23 Aug 2010

Royal Caribbean's Australasia managing director Gavin Smith says that a typical Royal Caribbean cruise that stops in Auckland, New Zealand can put $1.26 million into the local economy.  Royal Caribbean expects 6000 visitors to New Zealand in the 2010/11 season, rising to 36,000 in 2011/12 . Americans and Europeans made up about 70 per cent of guests.

Royal Caribbean's sister company Celebrity Cruises will have their 1800-passenger ship the Celebrity Century start or finish cruises out of Auckland from October 2011.

According to Smith, a full cruise ship helps create jobs in coaches, taxis, baggage handlers, customs and border control agencies that attended the pier and engagement with the airport and local hotels.

"We have local fresh produce provedoring requirements, we have fuel needs and we also have stevedoring needs because we'll do a full store in Auckland, in terms of container movements and the more industrial side of the business. The general figure that the cruise lines use is around a million dollars into the local economy on a turnaround day. And then you've got the additional upside of most of the Americans and Europeans and Australians that are getting on and off the ship will be buying one, two or three nights [accommodation] pre- or post cruise."

Smith also added that cruisers were more likely to spend money in the city on hotel stays because it was the place they would begin or end their cruise.

Cruise industry sees strong numbers despite some decline

21 Aug 2010

A new study, conducted by Exton, Pa.-based Business Research & Economic Advisors and commissioned by the Cruise Lines International Association, says that the North American cruise line industry generated a $35.1 billion economic impact last year.

This number is down 12.8 percent from the year before, but the CLIA  is seeing positive signs this year as the economy recovers such as net capacity (available bed days) among CLIA members in 2009 rose 3.8 percent, and average capacity utilization was 104.6 percent for the year.

The report also mentioned that total gross revenue declined by 11.4 percent.  The cruising industry supported 313,998 jobs that paid a total of $14.23 billion in wages and salaries. Direct cruise spending was $17.5 billion.

CLIA President and CEO Terry Dale said, “We are encouraged that the current economic climate is showing signs of improvement and cruise lines have been reporting strong activity thus far in 2010.”

South Florida remains the epicenter of the cruise industry, with the Port of Miami and Port Everglades ranking as the world's top cruise ports.  U.S. ports embarked 8.9 million passengers and accounted for nearly 66 percent of the worldwide total, based on figures for CLIA's membership, which includes the vast majority of cruise lines.