The CE annual reception and pavilion buzzed with activity

Wednesday, April 26, 2023 - 13:54 by ce-press

Cruise Europe’s Monday evening reception has become a well-attended annual fixture at Seatrade Cruise Global.

Taking place in Waxy O’Connor’s Irish pub, it was sponsored by the Nordic Capitals: Port of Tallinn, Port of Helsinki and Ports of Stockholm.

Next year Cruise Europe (CE) may be looking for a larger venue as member ports and cruiselines turned up in high numbers.

With Finland being named the happiest country in the world for the sixth year running by the UN’s World Happiness Report, attendees of all nationalities were certainly keen to join in with the Finnish spirit whilst networking and enjoying an Irish singer out on the terrace.

For the next three days, the CE pavilion hosted numerous visitors from the cruiselines and other interested parties. Represented were: the Columbus Cruise Center; Cruise Ireland; Estonia; Finland; Holland; North Atlantic Agency; Port of Aalesund; Port of Antwerp Bruges; Ports of Nordfjord; Riga and partners; Sweden and the French Atlantic Ports.

Gary Hall, secretary Cruise Ireland, commented: “The Cruise Ireland team were absolutely delighted to be back to full capacity on our own stand within the CE pavilion this year. The location of the stand was such that we were positioned strategically in quite a main thoroughfare to take advantage of visitors to the multiple ports and destinations within the CE family.  
“We had many productive meetings with cruiselines, fellow ports and stakeholders throughout the week, both on our stand and using the CE shared meeting room, which we found very beneficial. As a group, we believe that this will lead to increased cruise business on the island of Ireland.
“If the pandemic has taught us anything, it’s that collaboration is crucial. We heard it remarked from multiple customers that it was a breath of fresh air seeing the Irish ports and suppliers in one place.”

Whilst Jelena Burdastova, business support specialist cruise segment at the Freeport of Riga, told CE that port representatives had had about 20 meetings with cruiseline executives: “There were conversations with current partners in order to evaluate their experience in Riga and discuss possibilities to make our cooperation even more successful. We have also addressed several cruiselines whose ships have not visited the port of Riga yet.

“As a success of this year, we should mention the negotiations with a couple of cruiselines, which carry out exclusive cruises around the world, and which are planning to include Riga in their world cruise itineraries in 2025 and 2026.”

In addition Riga’s development plans were shared: “Currently, the new terminal project for cruise passengers is underway – soon we will be able to accommodate cruise vessels in the city centre in a more sustainable and convenient way and make the port infrastructure more accessible to cruise passengers, as well as locals.”
The CE annual reception and pavilion buzzed with activity
Representatives from Stockholm, Tallinn and Helsinki at the CE reception (c) Susan Parker

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