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Dream Cruises to China: Evolution of Luxury

Mar 24, 2016

Genting Hong Kong, a global leisure, entertainment and hospitality corporation, hosted special events for their agency partners and the media in Hong Kong on 18 March, Shanghai on 21 March and Guangzhou on 22 March, featuring esteemed guests Edie Rodriguez, President and CEO, Crystal Cruises, and Thatcher Brown, President, Dream Cruises.

The events provided a platform for Mrs. Rodriguez and Mr. Brown to discuss in detail Genting Hong Kong’s plans for both brands and their vision of how their respective cruise lines will continue to grow and evolve in the future.

Also part of the event program, fun activities for the attendees reflected the enhanced enrichment programs that will be offered on board Dream Cruises to heighten guests’ overall cruising experience including a spectacular floral art demonstration in Guangzhou and a Chinese-influenced tea preparation activity in Shanghai. A special preview demonstration of the highly-anticipated European butler service was also on the agenda in both cities.

“As wealthy travelers from China emerge as the growing market in the travel industry, we see great opportunity in delivering them Crystal’s uncompromised luxury service across all of our vacation experiences including Crystal Cruises, Crystal River Cruises, Crystal Yacht Cruises, Crystal Luxury Air and Crystal Residences,” said Crystal President and CEO, Edie Rodriguez. “It was wonderful to witness the excitement and enthusiasm from our China travel partners for Crystal’s unprecedented expansion in luxury travel and hospitality which will offer travel agents greater growth with their Crystal business.”

“It is our honour to visit these three very remarkable cities to help promote the launch of Dream Cruises to our travel industry partners and colleagues.” said Thatcher Brown, President, Dream Cruises. “The development of Dream Cruises introduces a home grown premium upscale cruise brand that is truly focused on the China market, providing travelers with a broader choice of cruise vacation experiences and accommodation options that are tailored-made for the Chinese vacationer including numerous connecting cabin options for families and specially planned restaurants offering authentic Chinese cuisines. We are grateful for our travel partners’ positive response to Dream Cruises and look forward to welcoming their clients on board Genting Dream this November.”

A pioneer in the Asia Pacific cruise industry, Genting Hong Kong established Star Cruises in 1993 and jumpstarted the current boom in cruise travel in China and across the region. Star Cruises has built its reputation on offering first-rate Asian hospitality and spearheaded the move to tap the China market with long term deployments in such cities as Guangzhou and Xiamen and in Hainan Province while providing specialized facilities on board to appeal to Chinese guests.

Building on the success wrought by Star Cruises, last year, Genting Hong Kong finalized the acquisition of Crystal Cruises, “The World's Most Awarded Luxury Cruise Line”, to capitalize on the growing global demand in the luxury cruise market and launched Dream Cruises, “The first-ever Asian Luxury Cruise Line”, designed to cater to the growing middle and affluent classes in China and the Asia Pacific.

As Genting Hong Kong looks forward to expanding its three cruise brands, the purchase of Lloyd Werft in 2015 and Genting Hong Kong’s acquisition of Nordic Yards’ three shipyards in Wismar, Warnemunde, and Stralsund in Germany in February will combine to form the Lloyd Werft Group, enabling the Company to realize its global fleet strategy over the next decade. The addition of the Lloyd Werft Group to the Genting Hong Kong portfolio will set the company apart as the only cruise operator in the world with its own shipbuilding capabilities.

Continuing to raise the bar even higher in the cruise industry, Genting Hong Kong’s vision for Crystal Cruises is to grow the brand to take guests to new levels of luxury, service and adventure whether it is by ocean, river or even air. To realize this goal, Genting Hong Kong announced an expansion plan to broaden offerings to include residences, expedition, river, yacht and air cruises. In December 2015, Crystal Esprit embarked on her maiden voyage for Crystal Yacht Cruises as the first expansion of the Crystal Cruises fleet. Other key investments in 2015 included the purchase of a Boeing Business Jet B777-200LR and a Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner for the launch of Crystal Luxury Air in 2017. Additionally, Crystal purchased and recently unveiled a lavishly outfitted Bombardier Global Express XRS jet for the new Crystal Luxury Air brand, which debuted in April 2016 featuring exclusive chartered service for guests to fly privately to their Crystal vacation experience or for corporate travel.

Crystal will offer Crystal River Cruises beginning in July 2016 with the launch of the Crystal Mozart, followed by four brand new luxury river yachts in 2017 and will also extend its expertise in ocean cruises and residences with the new Crystal Exclusive Class vessels with deliveries planned in late 2018. Months after the successful launch of Crystal Yacht Cruises’ 62-guest Crystal Esprit, Crystal announced its plans to build the world’s largest polar class megayacht featuring 100 guest suites. On 4 February, 2016, Crystal Cruises announced that it, along with various conservancy and government agencies, will seek to save and restore “America’s Flagship”, the SS United States, such that more travellers can sail the sea on this landmark symbol of maritime excellence while enjoying luxurious facilities of a modern day cruise liner.

The addition of the Dream Cruises brand to the Genting Hong Kong portfolio is timely, enabling the company to introduce a premium cruise brand that is Asian at heart, specifically catering to the growing upscale cruise segment in Asia and China. As a pioneering Asian cruise provider, Dream Cruises was conceived in the spirit of being an integrated resort at sea in order to leverage Genting Hong Kong’s core expertise in both land and sea based businesses. Dream Cruises will make its debut with two Dream ships currently under construction, Genting Dream and World Dream, scheduled to launch in 2016 and 2017, respectively. Offering incomparable levels of service in the region, Dream Cruises transposes the spacious and elegant accommodations, luxury service standards and memorable onboard experiences of Crystal Cruises and customises them to serve and inspire the fast growing Chinese market and Asia market.

Upon her launch, Genting Dream will make each guest’s Dream Cruises experience more comfortable and memorable, highlighted by the Exclusive Dream Mansion “ship within a ship” experience offering the most spacious suites in Asia, luxury amenities, priority access and European Butler service. Genting Dream will also offer world-class entertainment that includes award-winning acts specially sourced through Genting’s resorts globally and, with Genting Hong Kong’s recent acquisition of renowned Singapore nightlife brand, Zouk, the ship will also feature the world’s first Zouk nightclub at sea. With more than 35 restaurants and bars onboard, dining options will have a culinary emphasis on Asia showcasing dining experiences from all the regional cuisines of China as well international favorites such as Japanese, South East Asian, Italian, and more.

Dream Cruises to China: Evolution of Luxury

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