NCL reveals strategy for fleet at Norwegian Gem launch

Norwegian Cruise Line hopes to change the way customers view cruising with its new range of ships.

Speaking at the launch of Norwegian Gem in Dover last week, attended by more than 1,000 agents, NCL sales and marketing executive vice-president Andy Stewart said: “Our new ships are being built to blow your mind and change what people think about cruising.”

Norwegian Gem in Dover

NCL also revealed it will have the youngest fleet of any major cruiseline when it takes Norwegian Crown out of service in November, bringing the average ship age down to five-and-a-half years.

Stewart said that with ex-UK and European bookings doing well on its three ships deployed for the UK market, he would expect to add capacity and ships for 2009.

“By 2010 the mid-size ships NCL is known for will be out and we will have our new classes of freestyle cruising ships,” he said.

Earlier in the week the steel was cut for NCL’s 150,000-ton F3 class of ship, which will come into service in 2010.

The Passenger Shipping Association held its annual dinner on board Norwegian Gem where Ruby Wax was the special guest. Cunard president and PSA chairman Carol Marlow announced next year’s dinner will take place on P&O’s new superliner Ventura in April.

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