British-based cruise line Cruise & Maritime Voyages (CMV) has announced a dedicated cruise ship for the French market, a new brand and the opening of a sales office in Marseille.
The ship, Astor, which has been serving both the Australian and German cruise markets with complementary summer programs since being acquired by CMV in 2013, will be re-deployed to the French market commencing cruise operations in Le Havre on Saturday 1 May 2021.
Astor will be re-named Jules Verne in 2021 operating year-round under the Croisières Maritimes et Voyages (CMV) brand from both Le Havre and Marseille. The ship will be exclusively dedicated to the French-speaking premium cruise market, targeting the adult-only market apart from selected three-generation family cruises operating during the school holidays.
“There is a real gap in the market to exploit”
Chris Coates, group commercial director, commented at the Paris media launch: “We are delighted to be entering the French market with Jules Verne and firmly believe that there is a real gap in the market to exploit between the larger mega-resort ship operators and niche luxury cruise lines with an affordable premium positioned product.
“We are confident that Jules Verne and our new French product will prove to be a big hit in France and other French-speaking markets and under the leadership and expertise of Clement Mousset, we have assembled a highly experienced management and sales team ready to launch the program in the New Year.”
New sales office in Marseille
A dedicated and refurbished new CMV sales office in Marseille, close to the Port will open for business on Thursday 2 January 2020. Clement Mousset will be supported by Cedric Rivoire-Perrochat as director of marketing & operations and a top-level front-line sales team comprising a sales manager and team of five business development managers, an office-based support team, plus marketing, group and reservation depts.
A brand-new website with a booking engine facility will also be unveiled followed by an 80-page special edition launch brochure.