TUI Cruises chief executive Richard Vogel, in center signs, the deal

In what surprised this journalist, TUI decided that a newbuild was in store for the growing German market. Most likely this was done as a way for parent company Royal Caribbean ltd. to compete with rival German line AIDA (owned by Carnival Corp.) During the press conference to announce the deal, Mr. Vogle declined to comment on the price of the order. Not sure why, but he did hint that it is inline with recent orders for that size. This puts it at just over USD$500 million. Well see how close that figure comes in once more details leak out.

One funny moment came last night when Mr. Vogel was asked about what he had in store for today’s press conference and he stated: ‘It is about a new entertainment program, I believe.’

MSC

MSC is now largely rumored to me in negations with STX France to purchase the former Lybian newbuild currently under construction in St. Nazaire.

MSC Cruises CEO  Pierfrancesco Vago, in an exclusive interview with Seatrade Insider, stated that he is going to consider bringing a Fantasia class vessel to Germany. Stating “MSC’s source markets Germany has obtained second rank after Italy, with Vago considering a volume of 200,000 passengers per year a realistic benchmark to be achieved very soon.”

The two new ships MSC might order will be of  new prototype. MSC is trying a new concept here. Instead of enlarging a vessel by making her longer, wider, taller, and deeper, they are going to simply widen her. By giving her a larger bean, they gain more space, can fit more cabins inside or simply enlarge them, yet get to keep length under control. Ships lengths are the biggest obstacle in viable port of calls. MSC hopes that they can still use the same ports for their flagships. Keep in mind that vessels such as Norwegian Epic and Oasis of the Seas are severely limited in where they can go.

This is actually a similar philosophy Boeing used in the 90’s to create the 777.

AIDA

AIDA Cruises’ newbuilds will use “dual-fuel engines.” The 2 ships in question are the newbuilds from Japan.

Michael Thamm, president, AIDA: As the German market leader in the cruise segment, we very much feel obliged to the sustainable protection of the environment.”

From the Floor at Seatrade

There are 250 exhibits from 50 countries.20 companies new to the cruise industry.

220 cruise line executives, 120 vendors.

The European Cruise Council will hosted a cocktail party this evening featuring many industry speakers a private dinner tonight at the Atlantic Hotel, sponsored by Deerberg-Systems, Fidelio Cruise and Hobart.

Tonight

In store for tonight are the annual Seatrade Awards: SPOILERS

Cruise Copenhagen Network (Destination of the Year), Port of Falmouth, Jamaica (Port of the Year), Hobart GmbH (Onboard Supplier), Toby Biddick’s Green World Tours for Carnival UK (Environmental Initiative), Iceland Travel’s ‘Reykjavik to the Rescue’ (Innovative Shorex) and Viking River Cruises (River Cruise Initiative)

addt’l reporting from Seatrade and CIN

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