Gregg Michel is stepping down from his position as president of Crystal Cruises. Michel joined Crystal as SVP, finance and administration in 1988 and was promoted to president and COO in 2001. He has served in the past as the chairman of CLIA (the Cruise Lines International Association) and helped develop safety and security policies for the cruise industry as a whole.
Filling the gap left by Michel is Edie Bornstein, who will be appointed president of the line effective October 16. Bornstein has over 30 years of experience in the cruise industry, and was previously SVP of marketing and sales at Azamara Club Cruises from 2009 to the present day. Before this, she was VP of business development and strategic partnerships for Carnival Cruise Lines, and has also served as a senior officer at Cunard and Seabourn Cruise Lines, where she developed strategic plans and led partnerships with several luxury brands.
“Like so many in this industry, I’ve admired Crystal from afar,” Bornstein said. “I always thought the line was ahead of the luxury curve with so many innovative programs and product features. I’m so proud to begin a new story with Crystal Cruises and join this team at sea and on land, who should feel so proud of this incredible brand. I look forward to building on this stellar reputation, growing our travel agent partnerships, and leading Crystal into the future.”
Another transfer taking place in the industry is happening at the ship level. The 1,600-passenger, 48,200-ton Grand Mistral is being transferred from the Iberocruceros fleet to Costa Cruises and will be renamed Costa neoRiviera. Iberocruceros is the Spanish cruise brand owned by Costa Crociere. Grand Mistral was completely refurbished in 2005 and further enhanced with the addition of new suites and cabins in 2007. Beginning Nov. 24, 2013, Costa neoRiviera will sail an innovative seven-night itinerary, "The Emirates in Style," that includes all overnight calls.
Silversea launched its second expedition ship, the Silver Galapagos (formerly the Galapagos Explorer II). The 100-guest ship recently completed a major renovation, and is embarking on her first-ever voyage under the new name. Ship enhancements include the installation of Wi-Fi access throughout the ship (including all suites) and a new complimentary service providing streaming movies and live television news broadcasts for guests on portable devices. Other renovations include a new fitness center, massage room, beauty salon, outdoor Jacuzzi, outdoor furniture and outdoor dining venue, The Grill.