Robert Halfpenny has been named as Quark Expeditions’ Director of Sales – APAC, based in Sydney.
Halfpenny will assume the role from 1 October 2021. He was most recently the Managing Director of the Australian expedition cruise operator, Aurora Expeditions.
The cruise and travel industry veteran joins Quark Expeditions as the polar adventure specialist expands its sales team in Australia ahead of the launch of its new game-changing ship, Ultramarine.
Under the leadership of Thomas Lennartz, Vice-President of Sales, and Meg Murgatroyd, Global Partnership Director, the expanded Australian sales team will enable Quark Expeditions to build closer, more effective partnerships with tour operators, as well as wholesale and retail travel partners globally.
“Since 1991, Quark Expeditions has been pioneering polar expedition travel and remains committed to specialising in the Polar Regions,” said Lennartz. “Being specialists requires a specialist sales team and these recent appointments of high-calibre sales professionals signal our commitment to provide our partners with the best expedition cruise sales team to support and grow their business.”
Halfpenny brings vast travel sales expertise to the role of Regional Sales Director, APAC. Prior to his three-and-a-half year stint with Aurora Expeditions, he was the long-standing APAC Sales Director and Key Global Accounts Director with Rocky Mountaineer. His career has also included senior sales positions with the Globus family brands, and Virgin Blue [Virgin Australia].
“I have admired Quark Expeditions’ commitment – over the last 31 years – to consistently pioneer new life-changing polar experiences for their guests,” said Halfpenny. “I am thrilled to join the Quark Expeditions team and continue to build the brand and sales with the trade here in the APAC marketplace.
“Quark Expeditions has robust plans for developing and building the brand in the APAC region and I am extremely excited to work with the global sales team and reconnect with my travel industry network,” Halfpenny remarked.
Quark Expeditions’ Australia sales team also welcomes a new Polar Travel Sales Team Lead as of 1 September. Thomas Hosemans, who was most recently Australasia Sales Consultant with Exodus Travels (a sister company to Quark Expeditions), previously worked as Store Manager for Flight Centre’s My Adventure Travel enterprise in Hawthorn, Australia. Also joining the team this month is Polar Travel Sales Advisor, Alana Lewthwaite, who brings eight years of polar travel sales experience acquired at Tailor-Made Journeys, during which time she traveled to the Antarctic with Quark Expeditions. Lewthwaite also spent two years in sales with the Flight Centre in Brisbane and Melbourne.
In April, Quark Expeditions’ Australia operations welcomed Monize Diniz to the Customer Experience team. The multilingual Diniz has worked in administrative, customer service and sales-support roles at Tailor-Made Journeys/South America Travel Centre and TUI’s Hotelbeds Group. In May 2021, Quark Expeditions appointed Tenille Hunt to the position of Business Development Manager, Australia for Quark Expeditions. The Melbourne-based Hunt has 20 years of industry experience with G Adventures and Chimu Adventures. She’s also a seasoned polar traveller having explored the Arctic and twice-visited Antarctica.
The newly-expanded sales team are excited to showcase Ultramarine to their partners. The 199-passenger ship is now scheduled to enter service on 25 November 2021 to Antarctica on a 20-day Solar Eclipse itinerary.
Lead image: Ultramarine