Carnival Corporation recently announced plans to sell Windstar Cruises to Ambassadors International, for $100 million. The sale is expected to be finalized during the second quarter of 2007, pending regulatory approval. According to Carnival, the sale of Windstar aligns with the company's plans to focus on growing their "core brands"--Carnival, Princess, Holland America, Cunard, Costa, Seabourn and several European cruise lines not marketed in North America.
Ambassadors International is relatively new to the cruise industry. Their cruise division, Ambassadors Cruise Group, was formed last year when the company acquired Delta Queen Steamboat Company and American West Steamboat Company. The two river cruise lines were merged to form a new river cruise company, Majestic America Line, now North America's largest river and coastal cruise line.
Windstar Cruises is a first class cruise line. I hope, under the new Ambassadors International, these standards of quality are maintained. LL Moderators, I hope you will continue to offer Windstar Cruises.
Disneygal, thanks for the web link. It made for interesting reading. We were on the Windsurf a few months after it had changed hands from Club Med to Carnival. There was lots of speculation that the quality of services would go down. Much to our delight, services improved, the Windsurf staff were happy and several improvements were made to the ship. Let's hope Windstar does as well under new ownership this time!
Thanks for this post. The debate does seem to be getting pretty heated over on CruiseCritic. I've always liked the idea of sailing on one of Windstar's yachts, but it sounds like it might be a good idea to let the dust settle on the merger before committing to anything for 2008. I wonder if there's going to be a run on 2007 sailings by 'swan song' cruisers who want to take one last trip before the takeover.
Windstar is assuredly stronger than ever, and we have many delighted customers that are taking advantage of the exclusive savings that Luxury Link offers on these voyages. Now is a truly opportune time to experience these one-of-a-kind sailing journeys, as Windstar has expressed its dedication to Luxury Link in terms of surpassing travelers' expectations and continuing its outstanding level of service and experience.
The recent merger has been a means for Windstar to actively pursue luxury cruising in a more streamlined manner, and this is certainly a benefit that consumers will notice and enjoy.
We recommend considering the fantastic Barbados trips that take off in late 2007; and of course Luxury Link will be bringing you an unparalleled collection of 2008 voyages at substantial savings in the near future, so keep Windstar close in mind!
Thanks moderator KG for this information. I'm looking forward to seeing what you have in store for 2008! As a past Windstar cruiser, I highly recommend this line. Thealumni magazine (Foremast) also echos the idea that the new ownership will be beneficial, and the merger with Majestic will allow fora unified focus on luxury cruising.