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I Researched the Ritz-Carlton Yacht Collection Years Ago


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Anyone that loves cruising, loves when a new brand enters the cruising space.  I can't imagine how difficult it would be to create a new brand, in the Cruise Industry.  Then add a world virus that affects all aspects of the industry from building, supply chains and recruiting.  Virgin Cruises wanted to make cruising different.  Some of their idea's were great others needed some evolutions.  Yet many years ago, when I heard Ritz-Carlton Yacht Collections was entering the Ultra-Luxury Space, I was flat out excited.  After all, it is the "Ritz".  Iconic, well known and funded. 

 

At the time, I did what I always do, I did a deep dive.  It was introduced, the ships had not even been built or close to built yet.  The Leadership Team was in place, the business model was outlined, and the ships were designed pre-production.  They wanted to attract those affluents guests that had never cruised before as their main client foundational base. Loyal Ritz Carlton Hotel guests vs. Ultra-Luxury Cruise enthusiasts. I was the latter so not their target market. 

 

At the time, the telephone representatives had a lovely accent, sounded professional at first glance.  However, the email correspondence when you made an inquiry was generic pages.  It was a bored marketing person that created pages of things that never quite locked into any part of the cruise experience clearly.   The emails were addressed to someone other then me which showed a cut and paste approach.  That was NOT a characteristic of Ritz the brand.  I was not impressed.  So I wrote the CEO, Mr. Douglas Prothero.

 

To my surprise, Mr. Prothero's administrative assistant called me and arranged a telephone call with Mr. Prothero.  After that call, I knew, Ritz Carlton Yacht Collection would be a great success.  It would have growing pains for sure.  Yet it would be a home run.  I was so impressed with Mr. Prothero and his vision, experience and enthusiasm.  I was not easy on him, I let him know my experience with the communication of his representatives was underwhelming.  He handled it and me like a true professional. 

 

I have read most all the posts on CruiseCritic.com and other sites relating to the Ritz brand.  It is starting to become very, very positive.  They seem to be listening to the guests, handling the issues, realizing what is working and not.  That is the sign of an iconic brand.  So congratulations to the Ritz Carlton Yacht Collection, to all the guest that wanted to be some of the first, to those guest that make post/video's for the rest of us to learn from.  

 

Cruise well and enjoy every moment. 

 

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We are fortunate to always be able to stay in the top-level suite on our many cruises.  The thing we enjoy most is having a hot tub on our suite's balcony to hang out there during the sail-away from every port, and have snacks and drinks while watching the scenery go by.  This does severely limit us to certain cruise lines that have these hot tubs:  HAL, Celebrity, and Oceania.  Even luxury lines like Regent does not have them.  So when I heard the RC Evrima has them in their Owners Suites, I had to take a look on their website.

 

The RC Owners Suite does look nice.  It is about the size of the top suite in the lines I mentioned, although smaller than O and maybe even Celebrity.  But then I looked at the prices...OMG, what are they smoking.  They are 5X the price of the top suites on the other lines.  Even RC's lowest level cabin is as much as the top suite on the other lines, but they are essentially the same size and features as a simple balcony cabin on those lines.  Who would ever pay this much while getting so little compared to what you can get elsewhere.  Sorry, but we will not be sailing with RC anytime soon, even though we could afford it, but the value is just not there.

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