Luxury hotels are always looking for ways to outdo each other, from death-defying infinity pools to custom lobby fragrances. But Ritz-Carlton has taken a slightly different approach by branching out into the luxury yacht business.
The hotel brand has announced that is building three custom seafaring vessels, with the first ready to sail in 2019.
“It’s a hybrid between luxury cruising and yachting,” Doug Prothero, managing director of The Ritz-Carlton Yacht Collection, told CNN Travel of the new venture.
The small ships, which will each have fewer than 300 guests on board at a time, are designed to bring the Ritz-Carlton mentality to the sea. That means Michelin-starred dining, one-on-one attention from crew members and customizable shore itineraries.
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“Existing cruisers will look at it because it’s new, loyal RC customers will come because it’s new from the brand they love and people who would not otherwise go cruising because it doesn’t feel like too much like a [stereotypical] cruise.”
In other words? Don’t expect crowded free-for-all buffets or jostling to get off the ship when it docks.
Don’t worry – you can still get a posh suite on the sea.
“With the first two ships we will do the Mediterranean, Northern Europe, Eastern Canada,
New England, the Caribbean and Latin America. The second ship will get the St. Lawrence River and the Great Lakes,” he explains. “The third ship we envision being based in the Pacific.”
While rates have not yet been announced or itineraries finalized, tickets for the first sailing will go on sale in May 2018, so mark your calendars now.
SETTING SAIL IN 2019
The Ritz-Carlton is taking its legendary service and unmatched luxury to sea. Beginning in 2019, the company will offer bespoke cruises on three lavishly built yachts.
Each custom-built yacht offers an intimate journey with space for only 298 guests. Accommodations include 149 suites, each with its own balcony, and several luxurious duplex penthouses. As with The Ritz-Carlton on land, cruises feature:
Thoughtfully designed, modern interiors
Destination-based activities with local chefs, artists and musicians
Luxury amenities including The Ritz-Carlton Spa
Elevated dining including a restaurant from Sven Elverfield of Aqua, the three Michelin-starred restaurant at The Ritz-Carlton, Wolfsburg, and Panorama Lounge
Voyages range from 7 to 10 days and include overnight and daytime ports of call. The first yacht sets sail in 2019; reservations open May 2018.