Sea ViewsFrom President and COO, Adam Goldstein

Sea Views Blog with Adam Goldstein

Meeting Presidents, Heading to DC, and Visiting Europe: All in Days Work

I’ve been on the road a bit lately.  We are all quick to highlight the hassles of travel but with those hassles usually come a variety of interesting experiences.

Richard Fain and I recently spent a day in Port au Prince, Haiti.  We met with Haiti’s new and energetic President Michel Martelly.  Given our status as Haiti’s second largest foreign direct investor, it made sense to take the time to meet the President and a number of his advisors.  The outlook for the new government is uncertain given the President’s struggle to obtain the Parliament’s approval of a Prime Minister.  It was apparent that President Martelly and his team understand the role of tourism in generating sorely needed economic activity.  We hope and expect the government will actively support the necessary steps to establish the Citadelle and the Palais Sans Souci as first tier attractions.

citadelle-laferriere-mountaintop-fortress-at-the-top-of-labadee-in-haiti

I was also in Washington DC for a day and a half.  I completed my two years of service as a member of the Travel & Tourism Advisory Board that advises the U.S. Secretary of Commerce.  Putting aside the minor detail that there is no Secretary of Commerce at the moment, the final session was productive from my standpoint.  I was able to present a series of recommendations to the agency relating to national energy policy and the rationale for why the Department of Commerce and the tourism industry should actively support such recommendations.  It was a nice confluence of my involvement with the Advisory Board and the Energy Security Leadership Council.

I also met with several Representatives on Capitol Hill, including Terri Sewell whom I had read about in the Princeton Alumni Weekly (we have Princeton and Harvard Law School in common).  I believe she is the first African American woman to have been elected to Congress from Alabama since Reconstruction. She is the only Democrat in Alabama’s congressional delegation and is also the leader of the freshman Democrats in the House.  It was very interesting to hear her views on trying to work across party lines to get something done for the country.  Suffice it to say it isn’t easy.

The most significant trip was a week in Europe of nonstop sales and marketing sandwiched around our company Board meeting.  This is not how we recommend our customers experience Europe:  Arrive Monday morning in Barcelona via Madrid (events all day), Tuesday in Milan (events all day), Wednesday in Paris (you guessed it) and then back to Madrid for a day and a half of Board meeting duties and then one final sales and marketing dinner on Friday night before flying back to the U.S. Saturday morning.

The major reason I don’t mind the logistical insanity is the satisfaction I derive from seeing our different teams in action.  Regardless of the maturity of the team (e.g., Spain 5+ years, France 3 months) or the nationality, there is so much pride and passion that each team demonstrates for building our brands in their respective markets.  It is a real privilege for me to have these opportunities to help them pursue their goals.

While most of the people we interact with are travel agents, an important part of each visit is doing one on one and group interviews with journalists.  It is invariably the case that the journalists’ questions reflect their nationalistic biases.  So in Spain, the media wants to know when Oasis of the Seas will homeport in Barcelona.  In Italy and France, the media wants to know when we will build ships in, respectively, Fincantieri and STX France.  One thing all financial journalists seem to have in common is a propensity to ask me questions they know in advance I cannot answer.  But they ask anyway.  Go figure.

There are more trips up coming.  Any guesses as to where?

4 responses to:
“Meeting Presidents, Heading to DC, and Visiting Europe: All in Days Work”

  1. Lisa Langrell

    My crystal ball reveals to me that your next stop is…China!?

    This particular blog interested me with respect to the marketing aspect of your blog. I have a GINORMOUS family in Rome, Italy. We went to visit the 100+ relatives a few years ago (we rented a restaurant) for a reunion. We did not cruise that particular time because naturally, it was all about visiting relatives. I wondered at that time, and every now and then since, why none of my relatives have ever taken a cruise? My thought was that the port is right there in their backyard, and yet..no cruises. Maybe its because for so long, trains have been the main mode of transportation. It takes you everywhere. For our annual trip this year, we are going to fly in to Rome, take a cruise, then stay back for a few days to visit relatives. I guess my question is, do you find “locals” from Rome taking your cruises? If not, what do you think the reasons are? Just curious because I have tossed around the idea of making the cruise a family reunion..but I dont know if I have the energy to try and do an transatlantic reunion venture with language barriers, etc. Just curious on your thoughts on it. Thanks Adam! Peace and Good Waves! (haha)

  2. Mandy

    First, let me say that I’m sorry about your Phillies! As a Red Sox fan, I completely empathize with your angst as the baseball season has ended…abruptly…for your favorite team.

    This may not be the ideal venue, but I am compelled to ask if there is any way you might reconsider including Dominica in at least ONE of your southern Caribbean cruises. I’m sitting on fence, trying to decide between a ho-hum, been-there-done-that itinerary on my favorite cruise line, versus jumping ship to a more appealing Southern Caribbean itinerary. The Serenade itineraries of 2012 were great, but I can’t say the same for the Brilliance itineraries. The smaller ship out of San Juan has always provided the more unique ports of call, but I don’t feel the same about Brilliance. It’s highly disappointing.

    I would ask you to reconsider this decision. Those of us who like to stay loyal to our FAVORITE line don’t want to do the SAME standard islands over and over again. Dominica, along with ports such as St. Kitts and Grenada, are less frequented locations which offer something completely different than just another beach resort and duty-free shopping experience. The same can’t be said for Guadeloupe.

    I know everyone feels their opinion is the RIGHT one concerning departure ports and ports of call. And I do understand the logic behind the Guadeloupe addition. I just don’t think it should be included on BOTH Brilliance itineraries. Serenade was a very popular B2B cruise ship and that will definitely change with these revised itineraries.

  3. Fernando E. villa

    I agreed that Royal Caribbean is the best cruise line in the world that is the reason why I like to join the friendliest family on the seven seas.

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