Launches new European river line with Crystal Mozart: Travel Weekly | Tech US News

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A German luxury hospitality group’s recently launched river cruise line aims to attract a family clientele as well as a younger clientele when it begins sailing next year on a former Crystal River Cruises ship.

Riverside Luxury Cruises, owned by Hamburg-based boutique hotelier Seaside Collection, will launch its first European river cruises aboard the former Crystal Mozart, renamed Riverside Mozart, from April. And Crystal fans will feel right at home on the double-wide vessel – it will be relaunched with many of its Crystal crew members on board.

Jennifer Halboth, a former Globus national account director who is CEO of Riverside Collection, Americas — the entity that sells and markets the cruise line for the U.S. and Canadian markets — said that shortly after Seaside quietly acquired the ship in In June, the company began an “aggressive” schedule to launch the brand, which officially went online in September. While the boat’s availability at the time was a selling point, Riverside said it wanted the Mozart for specific reasons.

“This ship really set the standard for luxury on the river,” Halboth said of her 2016 debut as Crystal River Cruises’ first river ship. “That’s the intention of Seaside Collection. They have luxury hotels, and they really want to have that same level on the rivers.”

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The 35-year-old ship, originally built for Peter Deilmann Cruises, will retain much of its structural components and distinctive amenities while undergoing renovations, with only a few new design elements incorporated into the refurbished ship before it begins sailing exclusively by the Danube Rio next year.

Butler service for each suite, along with four restaurants, an indoor pool with a current machine, a hot tub, saunas and steam rooms, a large gym and two pop-up bars on the upper deck will be on the ship. in line with what it offered before.

But the continuity of luxury at the Riverside Mozart, derived from its parent company and its predecessor, will not end with cosmetic touches. Seaside Collection owner Gregor Gerlach has hired a slew of former Crystal River Cruises employees, some of whom will return to their previous roles, including hotel manager, executive chef, captain and restaurant manager, Halboth said.

It’s a move she said Crystal’s guests can appreciate.

“All these former Crystal employees in Europe have come to Riverside. So I think being able to build on that Crystal history, while making it uniquely Riverside in time, will provide that level of luxury on the river.”

The Mozart is the only ship in Riverside’s fleet at the moment, but Halboth said there are plans to expand and possibly buy more of Crystal’s four former ships, which have not yet been sold, although the company is considering all options to make grow your fleet. .

Riverside is looking for newer cruisers

Riverside also hopes to attract a relatively younger market than the typical river cruise customer. With offices in the UK and Europe, as well as a new one established in the US. U.S., the company hopes to attract the European, American and eventually Canadian market.

“We want to be a little younger than the normal luxury market and target people in their mid-to-late 40s and older,” Halboth said. “We’re not going to wait until people are over 60 to get this product. We want them to start surfing with us sooner.”

The company said it will have to rely heavily on travel advisors to reach its target markets. Instead of offering its base commission of 18% this year, Riverside Cruises is currently offering a 21% commission on all 2023 bookings to drive interest. He also plans to present the Riverside Mozart to advisors at the 2023 ASTA River Expo.

“They can go back to their old Crystal customers, which are big targets, but also selling small-ship luxury cruises — SeaDream or Regent or Silversea — those are going to be big targets,” Halboth said.

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