At a press conference on board the brand new Norwegian Getaway, Norwegian CEO, Kevin Sheehan, ruminated on the future direction of the company in general, and some of the things that might change. What he had to say was worth hearing.
After the early initial setbacks for the Hawaii operation, Sheehan confirmed that the Pride Of America- the sole remaining member of an envisaged inter-island quartet, is doing very well indeed. So much so, in fact, that she is now the single most profitable vessel across the entire Norwegian fleet. Recently refurbished, the Pride Of America also had a number of single studio cabins added.
That single studio idea has been so successful for Norwegian that Sheehan intends to extend it to every single ship in the fleet. Right now, single cabins can be found on the three ships that Sheehan has helmed for Norwegian from the start- Norwegian Epic, Norwegian Breakaway and Norwegian Getaway- and the Pride Of America.
In addition, he confirmed that the popular, 24/7 service O’Sheehans Bar And Grill outlet- already a focal point in the last three ships- will be extended across the rest of the fleet. To make the venue a potentially more appealing evening dinner option, nightly ‘specials’ such as Prime Rib will be introduced to the culinary roster. On the recent press trip of Norwegian Getaway, the venue was packed to the rafters even in the early morning hours.
Sheehan also confirmed that each ship will also be getting its own Moderno Churrascaria. The Brazilian meat restaurants have proved very popular on Epic and Breakaway. Insofar as possible, these will be installed in close proximity to the Cagney’s Steakhouses, with an adjacent bar provided for each pair of venues.
He also confirmed the news that broke earlier in the week; the year round deployment of the 4,200 passenger Norwegian Epic in Europe from April, 2015. Sheehan was bullish about being able to fill the vast ship- one he describes as the one ‘best suited’ to the European market- but would not be drawn on the itineraries that have been planned for her. These will be announced at the forthcoming Seatrade conference in Miami this coming March.
There was no mention- or questions, to be fair- about the future of current Barcelona year round ship, Norwegian Spirit.
Sheehan, however, did confirm that the next two ‘Breakaway Plus ships’- Norwegian Bliss and Norwegian Escape- are on schedule for delivery in autumn 2015 and spring, 2017. And, although he again ruled out any imminent deployment of a Norwegian ship out of the United Kingdom, he made it plain that it might be something he would consider in the future.