PHOTO: Norwegian Cruise Line president and CEO Andy Stuart. (Photo courtesy of Norwegian Cruise Line)
To find out just how far the Miami-based cruise line has come and where it's headed, TravelPulse Radio co-hosts Tim Wood and Barry Kaufman caught up with the head of Norwegian, president and CEO Andy Stuart.
"It's a huge year for us," said Stuart, pointing out that the cruise line's celebration is poised to continue into 2017. "We'll be celebrating all next year with all sorts of little goodies and treats, and maybe a promotion or two. Lots of plans, lots coming."
While Stuart hasn't been around for all 50 years of Norwegian, he noted just how far the cruise line has come since he was hired in the late 1980s.
"When I joined the company we had three 700-passenger ships, one 1,500-passenger ship in the SS Norway. So that was our fleet in 1988 when I joined the company," said Stuart.
Looking ahead, Stuart is enthusiastic about the upcoming opening of Norwegian's Harvest Caye island destination in southern Belize.
"It's spectacular," says Stuart. "I think it will be the top destination in the western Caribbean."
Although he couldn't provide any details on the under-construction Norwegian Bliss, Stuart talked about what it was like to work with renowned marine life artist Wyland on the ship's one-of-a-kind hull artwork.
Other topics included giant swimming pools and the first racetrack at sea.
You can listen to the entire interview (starting at the 34:30 mark) and Episode 5 of TravelPulse Radio below.