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Cruise lines arrive in Tarragona for 64th MedCruise General Assembly

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The theme of the 64th MedCruise General Assembly in Tarragona, Spain is inclusiveness
Record participation from cruise lines is expected at the MedCruise 64th General Assembly taking place in Tarragona, Spain from June 11-14.

A number of delegates – including 26 executives from 23 cruise lines and 11 media representatives– arrived ahead of time to embark on an immersive mussel experience and Ebro Delta discovery tour that took place Sunday. More experiences showcasing some of the destination’s major attractions will follow throughout the week.

‘Tarragona is the perfect destination and environment for MedCruise’s General Assembly because, like our association, their commitment to excellence is evident and is reflected in their remarkable growth of cruise arrivals,’ said Figen Ayan, president, MedCruise.

‘From just 13 cruises in 2013, the port closed the 2023 season with an impressive 57 calls and hosted over 110,000 passengers.

‘There is no doubt that this event will support the continued growth of the Port of

Tarragona, as it has for other ports that have hosted the General Assembly in the past.’

Tarragona has a brand new cruise terminal, which Ayan described as ‘a significant milestone – not only for Tarragona but also for the entire cruise industry in the Mediterranean’. She remarked, ‘With its modern design and state-of-the art facilities, this terminal will not only enhance cruise passengers’ experience but also drive the local economy and promote sustainable tourism in the region… we are confident that it will make a significant contribution to the continued growth and development of the cruise industry in the Mediterranean.’

Cruise line executives

This year’s event is set to include representatives of Ambassador Cruise Line, Carnival Cruise Line, Celestyal Cruises, Costa Cruises, Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines, Holland America Line, Marella Cruises, MSC Cruises, Norwegian Cruise Line, Princess Cruises, Saga Cruises, Star Clippers, Swan Hellenic and Viking.

Among the high-end cruise lines, executives from Aroya Cruises, Crystal Cruises, Four Seasons Yachts, Orient Express, Seabourn and Silversea are set to appear.  

Inclusiveness

The general assembly's theme is inclusiveness, with events and sessions aimed at capturing this ethos. Ayan explained, ‘The “castell” or “human tower” is the symbol of this region… Like the human tower, we all carry universal values such as teamwork, solidarity, self-improvement, the feeling of belonging and the integration of people of all ages, origins, races and social backgrounds.’

Programme highlights

Anne Marie Spinosi, cruise manager, Corsica Ports and #PortsTogether activities director for MedCruise, will host the ‘Women Power in the Waters’ panel taking place on June 12. It will involve Figen Ayan, Kate McCue, online personality and captain at Celebrity Cruises, and Marie-Caroline Laurent, director general, Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA), Europe. With females making up 3% of the overall number of captains internationally and just 2% of the 1.25m seafarers worldwide, it will explore the tools and platforms needed to encourage and enable young women to enter the maritime sector.

Edgar Weggelaar, partner and CEO of Queer Destinations will deliver a presentation on June 13 aimed at reflecting the needs of the LGTBI+ community in terms of experiences and services in ports and destinations. Taking place on the same day is ‘Expeditions in the Med. Is it Possible?’ – a panel moderated by Nicky Guerrero, director, ICS, involving Hugues Lamy, director of port operations, Swan Hellenic and Spyros Almpertis, VP port operations/itinerary planning & fuel management, Crystal.

Other highlights include a gala dinner in the vaults of the Roman Circus, a UNESCO World Heritage site, familiarisation trips, networking events, B2B meetings, dinner at the PortAventura theme park and more. 

For more information about this event visit the MedCruise website.