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Meeting on the high seas

Event organisers are just now opening their eyes to the benefits conferences and incentives at sea can bring to their businesses

Meeting on the high seas
Businesses are only just now realising the benefits of hosting meetings and conferences at sea 

As the cruise industry continues to grow, and more and more consumers begin to experience the ease and enjoyment of a holiday at sea, it was only a matter of time before the business sector started considering how a cruise could work for them.

According to Bruce Setloff, Vice President of Global Charter Sales and Special Projects for Crystal Cruises, many organisations are now starting to realise just how easy and affordable it can be to host an event on a ship, with substantial savings to be made when compared to a land-based option. This is mainly because many of the things you’d pay extra for on land are usually included in the cost of the cruise, including entertainment and, in most cases, equipment such as projectors, screens, TVs, microphones and podiums.

According to Setloff, you don’t get more inclusive than Crystal Cruises. With more ‘world’s best’ awards than any other cruise line, hotel or resort in history, the cruise company has long delivered on the promise of all-inclusive travel. The value of a Crystal cruise versus other meeting and incentive options is simply unmatched, as nearly everything is included in the fare upfront. This creates the utmost confidence in working within defined budgets while, at the same time, planning exciting, customised programmes.

Travel the world
Crystal’s ‘all exclusive’ world features an unrivalled collection of luxury travel experiences spanning the globe, offering the most stylish, all-inclusive journeys by ocean, yacht, river and private air. Today’s meeting and incentive planners now have unprecedented options to motivate, reward and entertain their most discerning clients with expertly curated travel programmes, not only on board Crystal’s renowned ocean ships, but also through Crystal Yacht Expedition Cruises, Crystal River Cruises and Crystal Luxury Air.

Many of the things you’d pay extra for on land are usually included in the
cost of the cruise

From the ultra-elegance of Crystal Symphony and Crystal Serenity to the boutique, adrenaline-inducing adventures on the company’s megayachts, Crystal Esprit and Crystal Endeavor and the immersive cultural discoveries of a European river cruise that cannot be matched elsewhere. Whether guests are aboard the fleet of five state-of-the-art river yachts or enjoying extravagant around the world trips aboard a custom fleet of luxury aircraft, Crystal’s innate understanding of what it takes to create rewarding, experiential travel programmes is guaranteed to make any event uniquely inspiring and ultimately memorable.

Both Crystal Serenity and Crystal Symphony offer an endless array of fine dining, drinking and entertainment options. For dinner, private dining rooms can seat groups of up to 80, while more intimate gatherings can be accommodated in the Crystal Dining Room and speciality restaurants. And you won’t find any land-based alternative that offers Broadway-style productions, Creative Learning Institute courses, the Crystal Casino or any of a range of other entertainment choices available on a Crystal cruise.

Amenities and luxuries
Business is never as successful without ample time for play. Crystal’s feng shui-inspired spa offers massage, sauna and steam, facials and more. Each ocean-going ship also has a well-equipped fitness centre, several pools and Jacuzzis, paddle tennis courts, golf driving ranges and putting greens. There’s also a 360-degree teak promenade deck, which always offers the best views for walking or jogging in the open sea air.

Staterooms, which are appointed with comforts such as luxury Etro robes and Scandinavian down duvets, as well as business amenities including internet access and voicemail, provide guests with the opportunity for both peace and productivity.

Welcoming just 62 guests, the all-suite Crystal Esprit is the perfect reward for top incentive achievers, and can be used as a full-ship charter for a high-value incentive, executive-level board meeting or special affinity group event. While exploring off-the-beaten-track destinations – including the Seychelles, the Dalmatian Coast and the Mediterranean in 2017 and the West Indies in 2018 – guests can enjoy unrivalled all-inclusive amenities such as Crystal Adventures in every port, Michelin star-level cuisine, butler service for each suite, and exciting water sports from the yacht’s marina platform. For the ultimate extravagance, adventurers can enjoy an undersea discovery experience in a two-passenger submersible, along with exhilarating outings on the yacht’s Wider 32 speedboat.

Debuting in 2019, Crystal Endeavor will be the world’s largest and first purpose-built polar class megayacht, optimised for luxurious expedition cruising with unique amenities, spacious penthouse suites and thrilling global itineraries in the Arctic, Antarctic and remote island destinations. Boasting the largest suites of any expedition ship, Crystal Endeavor will be outfitted with a fantastic range of ‘toys’ for extreme adventure by air, sea and land, including helicopters, submarines, zodiacs and more.

Going downstream
Following the July 2016 debut of the beautifully reimagined Crystal Mozart – which will be followed by four brand new purpose-built river yachts launching in 2017 and 2018 – Crystal River Cruises offers an entirely new standard of exploring the grand waterways of Europe. Ideal for a full-ship charter or customised incentive programme, a journey aboard one of Crystal’s all-suite river yachts rewards guests or top performers with a front-row seat overlooking the breathtaking landscapes, renowned capital cities and fairytale-like villages lining the Danube, Rhine and Main rivers.

Expertly crafted itineraries boast an abundance of overnight stays, bespoke signature events and complimentary Crystal Adventures ashore in every port of call, while the nuanced exclusivity of river travel with Crystal allows each guest to become one with the destination on a very personal level.

By careful design, the yachts of Crystal River Cruises offer unmatched space and luxury, a butler service for every suite, superb cuisine and unrivalled enrichment. State-of-the-art technology takes independent exploration to entirely new levels, with complimentary Nordic walking poles, e-bikes, binoculars and Quiet Vox digital systems to enhance sightseeing on land and ship.

Crystal Cruises offer stylish, all-inclusive journeys whether by ocean, river or private air

From sea to skies
Take your next incentive programme or corporate meeting to lofty new heights, as the Crystal Experience takes to
the skies. The epitome of privilege, Crystal Luxury Air offers a gorgeous 12-seat Bombardier Global Express XRS jet to transport guests anywhere in the world. With leather executive seating, a cabin that is configurable for conferencing with colleagues or relaxing with friends, sleeping quarters, a full galley and the latest technologies for both business and entertainment, the accommodations and on-board amenities are true to Crystal’s superior standards.

Additionally, Crystal’s newest air service, Crystal AirCruises, will be launching in 2017. This service will whisk a pampered 84 guests off on extravagant 15, 22 and 29-day around-the-world trips aboard the company’s very own Boeing 777-200LR. Amid copious amounts of indulgent space, the jet will be completely redesigned with fully reclining flat-bed seats and plush amenities, all accentuated by Crystal’s world-class service and crew. Trips will include multi-day stays at
the world’s most luxurious hotels in destinations both revered and remote, the finest Michelin star-level cuisine prepared by celebrated chefs, and fabulous local cultural entertainment.

Studies have shown that luxury travel experiences provide a ‘wow’ effect far beyond a cash incentive or merchandise reward, presenting key audiences with experiences they might not otherwise pursue on their own to create long-lasting value and impact. Travel is the ultimate reward for a job well done – it opens doors and provides experiences that will create memories to last a lifetime. And regardless of which manner of travel best suits a programme or event – ocean, yacht, river or air – Crystal guarantees exceptional standards of service, space, quality and choice.

Crystal’s commitment to orchestrating innovative and inspiring events is unmatched, bringing a laser-focused level of personalisation to each programme’s needs. Setloff referred to this as “ECO”, a superior standard of Exclusivity, Customisation and Options that translates into significant results and return on investment for clients, and unforgettable experiences for every participant.

From full-ship charters to custom meetings or boutique incentive programmes, Crystal’s experienced team of skilled professionals take a vision and transform it into something that soars well beyond expectations. Whether you are planning for team-building events, individual enrichment or celebratory occasions, it’s all complimentary and part of the award-winning Crystal experience.


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