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Orlando Ashford Named Executive Chairman of Azamara


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Azamara has my attention now. They also bought the Pacific Princess.  I never was a big fan of RCCL cruises but I am now signed up for Azamara deals.  

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2 hours ago, Mary229 said:

Azamara has my attention now. They also bought the Pacific Princess.  I never was a big fan of RCCL cruises but I am now signed up for Azamara deals.  

 

Aramara doesn’t have my attention now until I see the direction that Mr. Ashford takes the line.

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9 minutes ago, kazu said:

 

Aramara doesn’t have my attention now until I see the direction that Mr. Ashford takes the line.

they will now be on my radar.  Up to this time (as far as US brands) I watched the CCL and NCL brands almost exclusively.  I have sailed RCCL, it wasn't my style.

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21 minutes ago, kazu said:

 

Aramara doesn’t have my attention now until I see the direction that Mr. Ashford takes the line.

Orlando will soon make sure Azamara has nobody's attention 🙂 According to what our travel agent has heard from numerous clients, Azamara rates very poor in the entertainment domain.  I hope they are not relying on Orlando to MAGA, i.e. Make Azamara Great Again! 

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We've done a fair few Azamara cruises and really love the ships.  We don't much care for evening shows and we're happy to just sit and chat with friends over a drink or two.  We've also sailed a lot with HAL on their smaller ships.  We enjoy both but I do hope that Mr Ashford doesn't make big changes to the 'old' Azamara brand.

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15 minutes ago, FlaMariner said:

LOL...let's hope his first call is to Oprah and he brings her over there also....

And risking banishment from this board, he can take America's Test Kitchen too.  I hardly see that it is worth spending money for that brand.  

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I have good feelings about him.  When we Westerdam passengers were stuck in Cambodia last year, he flew there and took charge of the situation.  There was good communication and I feel he did a good job in getting us home in a timely manner.

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29 minutes ago, USN59-79 said:

I have good feelings about him.  When we Westerdam passengers were stuck in Cambodia last year, he flew there and took charge of the situation.  There was good communication and I feel he did a good job in getting us home in a timely manner.

That was indeed a very nice gesture and truly demonstrates where Mr. Ashford's strength lies, compassion needed to become a well respected individual in the "human resources" field.  Unfortunately, that one competency is not one at the top of the list when looking for an individual to manage a cruise line.  He set Holland America back many years.

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46 minutes ago, USN59-79 said:

I have good feelings about him.  When we Westerdam passengers were stuck in Cambodia last year, he flew there and took charge of the situation.  There was good communication and I feel he did a good job in getting us home in a timely manner.

Too bad he completely ignored us as we were disembarked in Perth.

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25 minutes ago, zelker said:

As I'm sure many of you know already, RCL sold off Azamara so no telling what it will look like going forward, in spite of or because of Orlando:

 

Royal Caribbean sells Azamara: Travel Weekly

 

 

 

I think it will be a few years before sycamore imprints it’s personality on Azamara.   I am simply glad to see a new entrant serving the North American market with midsize ship, moderately priced cruises.  I am hoping Orlando’s hiring signals they will be expanding into HAL-like intensive, in depth itineraries.   We hardly need another Caribbean/Mediterranean/Alaska leisure line 

Edited by Mary229
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Say what you will but the reality is that as an employee albeit the top ranked, Ashford has no choice but to shill the official company line.

At HAL he had to defend larger ships and explain why smaller ones were unprofitable and needed to be sold off.

Now at Azamara he must and will extol the virtues of a small ship experience.

What his actual personal preference may be will likely remain unknown.

And if his next job is head of an all inclusive hotel company he will sing the praises of resorts being far superior to any cruise.

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25 minutes ago, johnmik1 said:

Another reason to never sail on Azamara!

 

I have never seen a reason to book this cruise line.  Won't have any interest in doing so in the future.  As far as I am concerned, the acquiring of these ships was a questionable business decision on the part of Royal Caribbean International initially.  (Keeping up with the Arisons, I think.)  

 

2 hours ago, taxmantoo said:

n the "human resources" field.  Unfortunately, that one competency is not one at the top of the list when looking for an individual to manage a cruise line

 

That was Mr. Ashford's strength.  It has never been fully explained to my satisfaction as to why hiring a total cruise newbie in that capacity was needed.  What was taking place within HAL that required a human relations expert?  

 

3 hours ago, FlaMariner said:

LOL...let's hope his first call is to Oprah and he brings her over there also....

 

Agree,  Branding aspects of HAL's cruise experiences surely has had its minuses in some areas.

 

I will argue that the Rolling Stone Rock Room,  the BB King Club, and Lincoln Center Stage, and Billboard have brought a breath of fresh air into the entertainment offerings for HAL.  But, couldn't such programming have happened without the "branding"?  

 

 

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47 minutes ago, Mary229 said:

I think it will be a few years before sycamore imprints it’s personality on Azamara.   I am simply glad to see a new entrant serving the North American market with midsize ship, moderately priced cruises.  I am hoping Orlando’s hiring signals they will be expanding into HAL-like intensive, in depth itineraries.   We hardly need another Caribbean/Mediterranean/Alaska leisure line 

Azamara is by no means new.  And their ships are small, not midsize (less than 700 pax).  And considerably more expensive than HAL, so definitely not moderately priced.

Azamara virtually invented intensive, port focused itineraries many years ago.  Have far more overnight stays than any cruise line, including some 2 night stays.

Check them out.

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4 minutes ago, ECCruise said:

Check them out.

 

I have and I have zero interest!  The ships are too small.  Friends who have sailed on them when they were brand new and sailed as Renaissance Cruise vessels had negative reports as to the onboard facilities.  The deck plans that I have seen as Azamara vessels show little/no change since their original construction.  

 

To each his/her own, and if you enjoy them, please--patronize this new venture.  If no one else benefits, their crew will benefit by being employed.  

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Aw, rats!  With all but two of our "little" ships gone, I was thinking of switching to Azamara because they still use small ships.   But with this news....NO WAY!!!  Perhaps Oceania.

Edited by Av8rix
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