It's been three months since Hurricane Maria devastated Puerto Rico, but the island is declaring its comeback for tourism as the winter season kicks off Dec. 20. Already cruise ships have been visiting for two months.

A high-ranking US Coast Guard veteran and an accomplished marketing professional have joined Cruise Lines International Association in SVP roles.

Cruise lines big and small, river/barge and expedition operators and even some of the top luxury brands are promoting deals for Black Friday and Cyber Monday, the big post-Thanksgiving holiday shopping days in the US.

MSC Cruises celebrated two milestones in its newbuild programme at STX France yard in St Nazaire on Wednesday - the coin ceremony and keel laying for MSC Bellissima as well as the cutting of the first steel and name reveal for MSC Grandiosa, the first Meraviglia-Plus class ship.

In spite of a 20-cent per share impact from hurricanes, Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. sailed past Wall Street expectations to turn in a record $3.49 per share profit in the third quarter.

Virgin Voyages revealed the first renderings of its 110,000gt newbuild at a party-like keel-laying ceremony attended by Sir Richard Branson, Boy George—who sang and played DJ—and cruise line president and CEO Tom McAlpin, at Fincantieri's Sestri Ponente yard.

On Dec. 17 Royal Caribbean International's Grandeur of the Seas is scheduled to become the first cruise ship to call at St. Maarten since Hurricane Irma, apart from a humanitarian relief mission by Majesty of the Seas last month.

Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. entered into financing agreements for the first and second Project Icon ships for Royal Caribbean International, scheduled for delivery from Meyer Turku in the first and second quarters of 2022 and 2024. 

The importance of this year's Florida-Caribbean Cruise Association Conference & Trade Show rises to an even higher level as the region recovers from hurricanes and earthquakes.

'The Caribbean is open for business and going strong,' Arnold Donald, president and CEO of Carnival Corp. & plc, stressed to the financial community on Tuesday.

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