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Seatrade 2007 Roundup: The Cruise Industry's Yearly Expo
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If you want to hear what's happening today -- and into the future -- check out our reports from Seatrade, the cruise industry's annual convention!

Cruise Critic's Editor Carolyn Spencer Brown and Community Manager Laura Sterling prowled the aisles of the trade show and attended panel discussions at the weeklong event held in mid-March. Held every year in Miami, it is the place for "of the moment" announcements by just about any company in the world that has anything to do with cruising -- and that also includes the cruise lines themselves. All of our coverage is archived below; stories appear in the order in which they were announced.

Thanks for tuning in and we'll see you next year ... at Seatrade.

If You've Never Heard of Fred. Olsen
The kick-off press conference for the week's series of Seatrade events was held at the uber-chic National Hotel in South Beach and, not finding a sign directing me to a venue in the hotel, I asked a reservations agent where to go. "Fred. Olsen?" he said, puzzled. "Is he staying in this hotel?" Read more....


Luxury Ships! Hot Rumors!
It's just Seatrade's first day and already rumors are spreading. There are no confirmations yet, but we've got it from numerous sources -- that two luxury lines will be announcing new ship orders this week. Oceania, the three-ship cruise line that was recently acquired by a private equity firm, is one; we as much predicted that when the acquisition was announced. Read more....

What Can You Learn from Cruise Line Presidents? Part 1
At every Seatrade, the highlight of the week falls on Tuesday morning, when a handful of cruise line presidents discuss the state of the industry. In short? The state is very, very good. The theater facility at the Miami Beach Convention Center was packed with way more attendees than seats (and I can remember, just two years ago, when you had no trouble finding a place to sit down). Read more....

Silversea Announces New Ship Order
At today's State of the Industry panel discussion on luxury cruising, Silversea's Amerigo Perasso, the company's new president, got to make the sexiest announcement of the day (actually one of the sexiest -- Oceania's Frank del Rio also dropped news that a ship order had been placed). Read more....

Sasso Announces MSC Caribbean Move at Seatrade
The fact that numerous media from all over the world converge on Seatrade makes it a logical place to announce news (whether it has anything or not to do with the conference). In this case, Rick Sasso, president of MSC Cruises' U.S. arm, told the assembled throng that the line will spotlight one of its newest and most contemporary Musica-class vessels in the Caribbean for 2008 - 2009. Read more....

Oceania's New Ships a Dream
Oceania officially confirmed what we already knew: that it plans to build two new ships. But the excitement is in the details, and this morning at Seatrade Oceania's Frank del Rio offered a few choice morsels about the vessels. "These ships," he said today, "will not be revolutionary, but will be evolutions of the existing Regatta class." Read more....

Seatrade's Most Dynamic Moments?
The fact that Seatrade is also a trade show -- a place where vendors and destinations create booths to display their wares, hopefully tempting a line to either buy their products or sail to their ports of call -- often goes unnoticed. But it's the most dynamic, fabulous part of the show. Read more....


Who Wins "Biggest Ship Ever" T-Shirt?
In our "guess the next contender for biggest ship ever" contest -- launched in conjunction with our Seatrade report about how ships are consistently growing in size -- we were completely impressed with how many Cruise Critic readers are interested enough in industry affairs that they're actually reading the stories! Kudos. And most of you were in the right ballpark -- Royal Caribbean -- though only a handful nailed the class of ship. Read more....

No Big Surprise: Italy's a Popular Booth
Among the destination booths, Italy's was the most popular today. Sure, as a cruise destination, Italy's ports -- such as Naples, Venice, Livorno (Tuscany) and Trieste -- are all among the most desirable ship calls in the world. But that's not what brought the throngs here today. No, instead credit the free lunch. Read more....

Asian Ports Raise Profile
Cruise Critic's yearly cruise predictions that continue to include Asia as the next hot region may still be a tad premature but it's clear here this week that countries such as Singapore, China and Japan are serious about welcoming visitors. At Seatrade, the fact that the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) has launched the first-ever cruise Web site devoted to North American and European passengers. Read more....

Are You Bored With the Caribbean?
In his presentation at the State of the Industry panel Tuesday, NCL's Colin Veitch asked the question a lot of people are thinking: Are cruisers bored with the Caribbean? True, it's no secret that there's not the same interest in the Caribbean as there used to be. Read more....

Luxury Cruising Rocks!
This year, more than any since we've been covering Seatrade, the focus has been on cruising's luxury lines. And despite the dismissive sneers that small-ship, upscale lines don't make money -- echoed by all of the panelists at Tuesday's big State of the Industry discussion -- luxury is hot. Read more....


It's Never Too Early For Santa. Or is It?
Many of the destinations exhibiting here at Seatrade try to pull you in with local flavor -- could be a guy playing a steel drum from an isle in the Caribbean or a non-stop espresso machine in the Italy booth. In Finland? Proud of the fact that the fabled Santa Claus and his equally fabled North Pole are located just about the Arctic Circle here, Mr. Claus and an "elf" flew in.... Read more....

SeaMobile To Launch Custom Portal at Carnival Cyber Cafes
Remember these buzzwords: feels just like home. That's what SeaMobile, the industry's premier supplier of onboard communications options, is aiming for with this week's unveiling of a new portal for onboard Internet cafes that's designed to offer just-like-home connectivity. Read more....


What Can You Learn from Cruise Line Presidents, Part II
Returning to where we started, we revisit some poignant, insightful and downright fascinating points that were made on the panel, Seatrade's opening event, and that got lost amidst more serious stuff. Here's a roundup of what we thought you should hear. Read more....


Are You Bored with the Caribbean? We Asked, You Answered
In response to the question posed during the State of the Industry panel -- Are you bored with the Caribbean? -- we asked Cruise Critic members to let us know how you felt. Read more....



--by Carolyn Spencer Brown, Editor


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