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NCL taps new heads of Experiences at Sea, Sixthman

Neil Brodie, left, now heads Experiences at Sea while Jeff Cuellar helms Sixthman
Norwegian Cruise Line appointed Neil Brodie to lead Experiences at Sea as VP and Jeff Cuellar as the new CEO of Sixthman.

Both succeed Anthony Diaz, who continues as a special advisor through June.

Experiences at Sea handles charters, meetings and incentives. Diaz served as SVP since August 2021. Wholly owned NCL subsidiary Sixthman arranges festivals at sea. Diaz was CEO.

Neil Brodie

In his new role, Brodie will lead the sales, growth and business operations for the charter, meetings and incentives department by creating experiences at sea for corporate, themed and affinity-based events across the NCL, Oceania Cruises and Regent Seven Seas Cruises brands.

'Neil has proven to be an integral leader within the company by guiding the team to have its most successful year in 2023, and I have no doubt that he will continue to accelerate on the tremendous growth this year,' NCL President David Herrera said.

Experiences at Sea kicked off 2023 with 13 back-to-back cruises from January to March, hosting a range of themed, corporate group and affinity events. The year concluded with the CM&I team completing 21 charters, a 133% increase from the prior year, including the longest charter in company history at 109 nights.

'Neil and I have worked closely together for the last couple of years, and it has been such a pleasure to watch him grow into the leader that he is today,' Diaz said. 'With Neil’s commitment and the proven results, he has fervently displayed to the organization, he is perfectly well-suited to lead the team into a successful future, and I feel fortunate to be able to maintain my relationship with him in an advisory role.'

Jeff Cuellar

Herrera also welcomed Cuellar to the Sixthman CEO role.

'Given his strong 24-year track record in the entertainment and hospitality industry, I am confident Jeff is the perfect person to lead Sixthman forward into its very bright future and continue to build on its 2023 successes,' Herrera said.

Cuellar joined Sixthman in October 2021 in what was then the newly created role of VP partnerships and most recently served as VP events, marketing and community, responsible for overseeing the creative development, marketing outreach and community management for all festivals at sea.

Prior to that, he played a major role in the growth of AC Entertainment, currently owned by Live Nation under the festivals division of C3, as one of the world’s leading festival operators. As a creative force and director of numerous music events including Bonnaroo Music & Arts Festival, Forecastle, Railbird, High Water and many more, Cuellar came to Sixthman with a deep background in event strategy, immersive brand partnerships, community engagement, business development, experiential design, marketing outreach and event operations.

He looks forward to building on the 'strong momentum and legacy that Anthony Diaz and Andy Levine created' and 'charting new paths for our team and guests to embrace our "Live Loud" culture.'

18 events in 2023

2023 was Sixthman's most successful year. It hosted 18 events, welcoming nearly 45,000 passengers and over 490 artists throughout 85 days at sea and across three continents, eight countries and five ships. It also hosted its largest on-board event with EDSea, a global electronic music festival, aboard Norwegian Joy.

In addition, Sixthman expanded its repertoire of affinities with the first Broadway voyage and Hallmark Channel cruise at sea, and partnered with top artists in comedy, rock, wrestling, EDM and YouTube.

Diaz said that in the short time Cuellar has been at Sixthman, he's made a significant impact and he led the strategy and outreach to 'strengthen and develop new artist relationships and debut first-for-the-brand festival concepts across all genres of music, sports, comedy, film, TV and more.'

Just a few of Sixthman's 2024 festivals include 'TruTV Impractical Jokers X Eric Andre Get Ship Faced,' Jan. 22-26 from Miami to Nassau, 'The Rock Boat XXIII,' Jan. 30 - Feb. 4 from Miami to Great Stirrup Cay and Costa Maya; and 'The Broadway Cruise 2,' March 13-18 from Miami to Key West and Grand Cayman, all on Norwegian Pearl.

Anthony Diaz acknowledged

'Sixthman had an incredible year, welcoming new communities to experience the magic that the team delivers at sea,' Herrera said. 'Much of that success was built upon the foundation laid by Anthony Diaz during his tenure, and we at NCL thank him for all of his efforts over the years.'