Royal Caribbean CRUISES lTD. presented the MIDDLE EAST TRAVEl TRADE Awards
56 percent overall growth in guest volume compared to last year for the Middle East
Dubai. 4th May 2011: Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. honored eleven travel industry partners from the Middle East today for their outstanding contribution to generating cruise sales in 2010. The award ceremony was attended by travel trade, media and VIPs at the ship shaped Royal Caribbean International stand at the ATM cruise pavilion.
Sales volume, quality of bookings, year-on year growth and business relationships were some of the criteria used for the much sought after awards. Introduced last year, the ‘Cruise Sales Agent of the Year’ category has proven to be very popular and was implemented again in this year’s awards scheme.
The award winners for the ‘Best Sales Performance in 2010’ are:
· Bahrain: Al Kaatib Travel – Shaikh Bader Bin Salman Al Khalifa, Managing Director
· Egypt: Thomas Cook Travel – Nancy Helmy, Outbound Manager
· Jordan: Aminkawar Travel – Reem Andoni, Deputy General Manager
· Kuwait: Barakat Travel – Maggie Ghanimian, Tours Manager
· Lebanon: The Travel Club – Ludmilla Medawar, General Manager
· Qatar: Qatar Tours – Babu Kumar, Tours Manager
· Saudi Arabia: Al Faisaliah Travel & Tourism – Ray Cinco
· UAE: BCD Travel – Sumit Acharya, General Manager
For the first time the Regional Award for the best sales performance was won by two agencies with the same level of performance:
· Kurban Travel, Lebanon – Nadine Boutros, Managing Director
· Transworld Tavel, Bahrain – Ali Qaeidi, Owner and Managing Director
The title ‘Cruise Sales Agent of the year 2010’ was given to:
· Emily Habaybe from Hashweh Corporation, Jordan for her outstanding performance and her hands-on approach.
Dr. Abdulaziz AlOshban, Principal & Managing Director of Safeen Tourism, the international representative of Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. in the Middle East, who opened the ceremony, said: “Cruising is one of the few segments of the travel industry that has continued to grow throughout these challenging trading times. A vital component in ensuring the regional cruise industry’s long-term growth is honoring parties whose contributions are laying the foundations of its future success.”
“We have been very successful once again by achieving fabulous overall growth of 56% of our guest volume compared to last year. We are proud to say that this growth was achieved by all the nine countries in the Middle East that we represent. This great success would not have been possible without the valuable support and sales performance of the travel trade in the region,” he added.
Helen Beck, Regional Director, International Representatives, EMEA, for Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. echoed the sentiments: “The travel trade community is very important to us and the majority of this successful business is sourced through our travel agency partners. As always we recognise and appreciate the efforts and achievements of our travel trade partners in promoting and selling Royal Caribbean Cruise vacations. Congratulations to all the winners and many thanks for your support.”
Beck continued: “It doesn’t seem like a year has passed by already since we awarded the travel trade in 2010 and so much has happened with Royal Caribbean International, Celebrity Cruises and Azamara Club Cruises. Royal Caribbean International’s Brilliance of the Seas has just concluded a successful second season sailing around the Gulf and we’ve received great feedback from our guests on the new 12-night itineraries sailing to India that we introduced this year.”
Due to the high demand Brilliance of the Seas will be back again in November starting her longer third season in the region.
“Celebrity Cruises will inaugurate another widely-acclaimed Solstice class ship with Celebrity Silhouette joining the fleet in July of this year. Azamara Club Cruises is continuing to evolve our immersion into exotic destinations and extend time in ports by including overnight stays in over 50% of our itineraries thereby providing time for guests to enjoy a more immersive experience and take advantage of night tourism in destinations where the nightlife is even more vibrant than the day’s.
“It’s good to see the GCC continuing to recognise the importance of cruising as a valuable growth sector within the tourism industry,” she concluded.
About Royal Caribbean
Royal Caribbean International is a global cruise brand with 22 ships currently in service. The line also offers unique cruise tour land packages in Alaska, Canada, Dubai, Europe, and Australia and New Zealand. For additional information or to make reservations, call your travel agent, visit www.royalcaribbean-arabia.com or call +9714 3314299.
About Celebrity Cruises
Celebrity Cruises’ iconic “X” is the mark of the world’s top-rated premium cruise line, with spacious, stylish interiors; dining experiences elevated to an art form; personalized service, with a guest-to-staff ratio of nearly 2:1; unexpected, trendsetting onboard activities, all designed to provide an unmatchable experience for vacationers’ precious time. Celebrity sails to Alaska, Australia/New Zealand, Bermuda, California, Canada/New England, the Caribbean, Europe, Hawaii, the Pacific Coast, Panama Canal, South America, and year-round in the Galapagos Islands. Celebrity also offers immersive cruisetour experiences in Alaska, Australia/New Zealand, Canada, Europe and South America. One of the fastest-growing major cruise lines, Celebrity’s fleet currently consists of nine ships, with two additional Solstice Class ships scheduled to join the fleet: Celebrity Silhouette in July 2011, and Celebrity Reflection in Fall 2012. For additional information or to make reservations, call your travel agent, visit www.celebritycruises.com or call +9714 3314299.
About Azamara Club Cruises
Azamara Club Cruises is a destination-immersive cruise line for up-market travelers who want to not only see the places and cultures they visit, but to live them. Azamara's two intimate, 694-guest ships, Azamara Journey and Azamara Quest, with a combination of 347 suites and staterooms, offer a European-boutique hotel ambience with extraordinary service, fine cuisine and wines from around the world, and wellness and vitality programs, all while sailing to a host of destinations larger ships cannot reach. Azamara Club Cruises sails European destinations, including the Baltic and Scandinavia, British Isles, Western Europe, French and Italian Rivieras, Greek Isles, Croatia, Holy Land and Black Sea, as well as Asia, South America and lesser-traveled islands of the West Indies, with more overnight and late-night stays in every region. Travelers also can choose even more immersive experiences with Azamara cruisetours in eight of the world's most exciting destinations, including Rome, Athens, Buenos Aires, Cairo, Istanbul, Jordan and Israel, India, and China. For more information, travelers can call their travel professional, call +9714 3314299, or visit the Azamara Club Cruises microsite at www.AzamaraDestinationImmersion.com. Travel agent professionals can also access more information and make reservations at www.CruisingPower.com.