Becoming an international cultural ambassador

CMI Leisure’s Dietmar Wertanzl tells Elly Yates-Roberts about the opportunities and challenges of a growing cruise industry

Becoming an international cultural ambassador
People are beginning to fully appreciate the value of cruising, says Dietmar Wertanzl

According to the Cruise Lines International Association’s State of the Cruise Industry Outlook 2020 report, 32 million passengers are expected to hit the seas this year. This is likely to lead to business growth for companies who provide cruise operators with hotel management services providers, such as CMI Leisure.

“The biggest growth for us is coming from our existing clients,” says Dietmar Wertanzl, president and CEO of CMI Leisure. “Six new ships are currently under construction which we’ll start operating in 2020, 2021 and 2022.”

The industry’s growth is paving the way for new onboard experiences.

“One concept we’re hoping to evolve is a ‘Hot Rock Lava Stone Grill’ where guests use volcanic rock to cook their food at their table,” Wertanzl says. “It’s all about choice. With the rise of internationalisation and a more varied mix of people onboard, guests want a little bit of everything – from Chinese food and sushi one day, to pizza or French food the next.”

Internationalisation has also given rise to other challenges for CMI Leisure to solve. “We provide our crew members with cultural training to understand and anticipate the needs and wants of guests from all cultures,” Wertanzl explains.

Wertanzl believes the industry’s popularity will continue to rise.

“People are beginning to fully appreciate the value of cruising,” he says. “The ocean itself plays a factor; it is romantic and exciting and unlike any other form of transport. Modern ships can also offer multiple holidays in one, with adventure activities, educational and cultural visits, and pamper sessions. There is something for every body, mind and soul.”

This article was first published in the Spring/Summer 2020 issue of Cruise & Ferry Review. All information was correct at the time of printing, but may since have changed.

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Elly Yates-Roberts
By Elly Yates-Roberts
19 May 2020

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