Celebrating the Seatrade Cruise Award Winners
Photo by Jason Leppert
Seatrade is honoring the behind-the-scenes contributors to a great vacation by presenting its Seatrade Cruise Awards 2016. In their 10th anniversary, the awards and their winners are indicative of a growing global cruise community, from ports to shore excursions.
This year, there was a record count of entries with more than 100, and from those, the Port of the Year went to ABP Port of Southampton in the United Kingdom. The historic port, where the Titanic once sailed from and is now part of Associated British Ports, currently hosts 1.7 million passengers annually from the likes of Cunard’s newly remastered Queen Mary 2 ocean liner and the world’s other largest cruise ships in the world.
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When last I sailed from the destination aboard the QM2, a gangway malfunction required the ship to be accommodated at the old QE2 Terminal instead of its usual Ocean Cruise Terminal, but that temporary issue notwithstanding, the overall facility and its four cruise berths are usually exceptional.
The Destination of the Year was similarly received by the Singapore Tourism Board, which just proves how the Asian cruise market continues to impress the international industry. Besides growing exponentially as a booming source for passengers, Asia is garnering increased interest as a region to visit with Japan, China, South Korea, Vietnam and Malaysia also most moving the dial.
Additionally, B&A Europe (Bermello Ajamil & Partners, Europe) took home the award for Supplier of the Year. Showcasing the importance of successful infrastructural support, the company’s website reads, “We plan and design the highest revenue producing waterfronts, ports and cruise destinations in the world,” as a premier international consultant group for facilities such as Port Miami, Bayonne Cape Liberty and even MSC Cruises’ upcoming Ocean Cay MSC Marine Reserve.
The Environmental Initiative of the Year went to Old City Harbour, Tallinn micro-tunnel construction, a project which will allow cruise ships to discharge unlimited quantities of sewage through a local shoreside pipeline. This effectively enables more ships to comply with the Marine Environment Protection Committee of the International Maritime Organization (IMO) standards that will no longer allow sewage to be offloaded in the Baltic Sea by 2021.
For Innovative Shorex of the Year, Hidden City Tours/Intercruises' “Barcelona (pictured above) guided walking tour by homeless” was celebrated. The tour program uniquely services the Spanish city’s tourism growth and its homeless challenges by providing them with job opportunities to share the streets they know so well with cruise guests.
Lastly, a number of individuals important to the industry were honored. Mr. Erkunt Oner, founder and CEO of Tura Turizm was bestowed the Seatrade Lifetime Achievement Award for Services to Cruising, the late Giuseppe de Jorio was posthumously awarded Seatrade Outstanding Contribution for his interior designs on hundreds of ships and Mehmet Kutman, chairman and CEO of Global Investment Holdings and chairman of Global Port Holding was named Seatrade Cruise Personality of the Year.
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