THURROCK-based cruise line, Cruise & Maritime Voyages (CMV), currently celebrating its 10th anniversary has announced the launch of a dedicated cruise ship and product for the French market, the launch of a new brand and the opening of a new sales office in Marseille.
The cruise ship Astor, which has been serving both the Australian and German cruise markets with complementary summer programs since being acquired by CMV in 2013, will be re-deployed to the French market commencing cruise operations in Le Havre on Saturday May 1, 2021.
To meet growing demand on the German market under the Group’s TransOcean Kreuzfahrten brand, she will be replaced by a larger vessel with details to be announced shortly.
Astor will be re-named Jules Verne in 2021 operating year-round under the Croisières Maritimes et Voyages (CMV) brand from both Le Havre and Marseille. Her maiden 2021-22 French season will include a program of 18 sailings to Northern Europe, the Mediterranean & Black Sea, a Christmas & New Year Canaries cruise and the winter season concluding with a 123 night Round the World cruise sailing from Marseille on January 8 and returning to Le Havre on May 11, 2022.
Jules Verne will be re-named at a special overnight Gala Event in Le Havre on Thursday April 29, 2021 followed by a second Gala Event in Marseille on Thursday May 16.
Jules Verne will be exclusively dedicated to the French speaking premium cruise market offering a stylish and elegant ‘modern vintage’ cruise experience for discerning guests seeking attentive and exemplary service standards, fine culinary French cuisine and a more traditional destination rich voyage experience. She will target the adult only market apart from selected three generation family cruises operating during the school holidays.
Astor, currently on the German market, will operate a farewell summer 2020 and winter 2021 season with a 127 night Round the World cruise returning to Hamburg on April 14, 2021. She will then operate a special farewell 9-night voyage before under-going some minor refurbishment and re-livery works ready for the new French season ahead.
Chris Coates, Group Commercial Director commented: “We are delighted to be entering the French market with Jules Verne and firmly believe that there is a real gap in the market to exploit between the larger mega resort ship operators and niche luxury cruise lines with an affordable premium positioned product.
“We are confident that Jules Verne and our new French product will prove to be a big hit in France and other French speaking markets and under the leadership and expertise of Clement Mousset, we have assembled a highly experienced management and sales team ready to launch the program in the New Year.”