British based Cruise Operator, Cruise & Maritime Voyages (CMV), is pleased to announce the sub-charter of the 16,144grt, 550 passenger cruise ship Azores from summer 2016 onwards to Rivages du Monde, the Paris based specialist cruise and tour operator.
Cruise & Maritime Voyages also confirm that Azores will be re-named Astoria when she completes her UK summer 2015 season. Prior to the start of the 2016 French North European, Adriatic and Mediterranean summer season, Astoria will operate a two month ex-UK spring season.
Christian Verhounig, CEO and Chairman of CMV commented, “We are committed to developing our international market presence and are delighted to have forged a business partnership with one of France’s most established and respected travel companies.
We believe that by changing the name to Astoria the product presentation will be simpler and more in line with our smaller ship offering alongside the similarly named 600 passenger Astor in contrast to our larger mid-sized vessels; the Marco Polo and Magellan, adopting the explorer theme”.
In 2016 Astoria will commence her French business on 11th May under the Rivages du Monde brand as a home market product operating 14 North European, Greenland, Adriatic and Mediterranean sailings from Le Havre, Dunkirk, Ostend, Bordeaux and Marseille.
Chris Coates, Commercial Director added, “We have been experiencing strong demand for Azores 2015 ex-UK regional summer programme. The introduction of Magellan to the fleet, which in 2016, will be operating year round, will enable Marco Polo to also be deployed regionally for part of the 2016 programme bolstering capacity and supporting Astoria’s spring season. This will increase year on year UK market capacity close to 70,000 annual carryings”.
CMV’s summer 2016 programme goes on sale next month.