2023’s SLTS Luxury Cruise Award winners are…

Multiple dual award winners and celebrations at the Sydney Opera House

Signature Luxury Travel & Style‘s 2023 Luxury Cruise Awards were celebrated on Thursday 30 November in Sydney, at an event that saw a dozen accolades presented in style, at the Sydney Opera House, no less, with the cruise industry left buzzing after the event.

Emceed by the hilarious Andrew Daddo and hosted within the Yallamundi Rooms on the forecourt of Australia’s most iconic landmark, overlooking Sydney Harbour, the event began with a fabulous Welcome to Country before a rapid-fire presentation of awards, recognising not only winners but those who placed second and third, all receiving gorgeous glass trophies.

Emcee, Andrew Daddo, kept a tight ship for a fast flowing ceremony, and kept guests thoroughly entertained.

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A guest list of the Australian cruise industry’s elite, including multiple brand representatives, travel advisors, special guests and Signature Media staff shared in the celebration as winners were presented awards in the following categories. Some luxury cruise lines walked away with more than one 1st placed trophy, including Silversea Cruises and Uniworld Boutique River Cruises.

Cathy Wagstaff, CEO & Group Editor of Signature Media – the parent company of Signature Luxury Travel & Style and LATTE – expressed her gratitude to the event sponsors Travel Associates, Monaco Tourism, Crown Towers Sydney and IVE, and to the expert judging panel, CLIA’s Managing Director, Joel Katz, and to the cruise lines for their involvement.

The winners in Signature Luxury Travel & Style‘s 2023 Luxury Cruise Awards were:

  • Ocean Ships – more than 750 passengers     >>>>>>   Oceania Cruises
  • Ocean Ships – 251 – 749 passengers     >>>>>>   Regent Seven Seas Cruises
  • Ocean Ships – Boutique, 50 – 250 passengers     >>>>>>   Silversea
  • Ocean Ships – Yachts, 50 – 250 passengers     >>>>>>   Ponant
  • Ocean Ships – Tall Ships     >>>>>>   Windstar
  • Ocean Ships – Multi-Generational     >>>>>>   Celebrity Cruises
  • River Cruises – Europe     >>>>>>   Uniworld Boutique River Cruises
  • River Cruises – Rest of the World     >>>>>>   Uniworld Boutique River Cruises
  • Expedition Ships – Luxury     >>>>>>   Silversea 
  • Expedition Ships – Four-star ship, Five-star experience     >>>>>>   Quark Expeditions
  • Luxury Operator     >>>>>>   Abercrombie & Kent
  • Ship-in-a-Ship     >>>>>>   Norwegian Cruise Line, The Haven

Recognition awards were also presented to HX (Hurtigruten Expeditions) and Ponant, for their focus and initiatives centred around Sustainability.

Below are the winners’ photos with award presenters.

See next week’s LATTE Cruise for a full event wrap-up with more photos and feedback from winners and guests.

Oceania Cruises

Ocean ships – more than 750 passengers

Michael Faulkner, Crown Resorts with Jodie Hart, Oceania Cruises

“We are delighted to win this award – it is an outstanding acknowledgement of the Oceania Cruises team, both onboard and ashore, as we continue creating memorable holiday experiences for our guests,” said Jason Worth, Vice President, International Sales, Oceania Cruises.

Regent Seven Seas Cruises

Ocean Ships – 251-749 passengers

Matthew , Regent Seven Seas Cruises; Rachel Kingswell, Travel Associates; Jodie Hart and Scott Graham, Regent Seven Seas Cruises

We are absolutely thrilled to have 1st place in the category of ‘Ocean Ships: 251-749 passengers’ bestowed upon Regent Seven Seas Cruises. This is testament to all those who make our product and brand outstanding.

“Thank you, Signature Media, LATTE, and the talented Travel Advisor judges. We are extremely grateful,” said Lisa Pile, Vice President Sales & General Manager Asia Pacific of Regent Seven Seas Cruises.

Silversea

Ocean Ships – Boutique, 50-250 passengers

Adam Radwanski, Silversea; Rachel Kingswell, Travel Associates and Philippa Walker, Silversea

“2023 has been a remarkable year for Silversea, marked by the launch of Silver Nova and the overwhelming support of our Australian and New Zealand guests who journeyed with us globally.

“We’re immensely proud to be acknowledged as a leader in Luxury Ocean and Expedition Cruising by industry heavyweights. Our heartfelt thanks go to Cathy Wagstaff and her team for hosting a wonderful event, and we deeply appreciate the significant role Signature Media plays in enriching the travel and cruise industry.

“Anticipating an even more extraordinary year ahead, we set our sights on 2024 with great enthusiasm,” said Philippa Walker, Silversea Marketing Director for Asia Pacific.

Windstar

Ocean Ships – Tall Ships

Andrew Milmore, Windstar Cruises/Travel the World with Michael Fletcher, Crown Towers Sydney

‘To receive this award is such great recognition for the fabulous Windstar team, from the warmth of the onboard team through to the innovative itinerary planners.

“There is so much effort that goes into making Windstar the best it can be for our customers,” said Andrew Millmore, Managing Director of Windstar’s long-standing representation partner in Australia, Travel the World.

Celebrity Cruises

Ocean Ships – Multi-Generational

Anthony Youssef, Celebrity Cruises with Jeff Leckey, House of Travel

“It is an honour to have our commitment to delivering elevated holiday experiences for guests recognised by the prestigious Signature Luxury Cruise Awards.

“Taking home four awards across an array of categories is a testament to the variety of holiday experiences Celebrity Cruises caters for. We thank the expert industry panel and wider cruise industry for their ongoing support,” said Emma Mumford, Marketing Director, Australia/New Zealand, Celebrity Cruises.

Uniworld Boutique River Cruises

River Cruises – Europe

Fay Cohen, Wentworth Travel with Alice Ager, Uniworld Boutique River Cruises
“Today has just topped off an incredible year for Uniworld! I thought the big win for the year was when we acquired two of the ex-Crystal ships to add to our fleet. But then we were voted Most Popular River Cruise Line by our industry at the NTIA awards last month, we thought the year couldn’t get better! However to be acknowledged by this esteemed panel of judges as Number 1 River Cruise Line in Europe… just wow!” remarked Alice Ager, Managing Director AU/NZ, Uniworld Boutique River Cruises.

Uniworld Boutique River Cruises

River Cruises – Rest of the World

Alice Ager, Uniworld Boutique River Cruises with Robyn Sinfield, Home Travel Company

“Being recognised as the #1 River Cruise Line in the Rest of the World has taken the sense of achievement to the next level. I would like to accept these two awards on behalf of our impeccable crew and staff on board our ships, my CEO Ellen Bettridge who pushes us to be our absolute best, and to my outstanding team who have worked so very hard this year – each of them have gone above and beyond for our agents and our guests throughout the year and I know they are feeling weary as we move towards Christmas.

“This amazing news today will give everyone a boost, just in time to celebrate tonight at our TTC Christmas party!” said Alice Ager, Managing Director, AU/NZ, Uniworld Boutique River Cruises.

Silversea

Expedition Ships – Luxury

Adam Radwanski, Silversea; Phil Hoffmann, Phil Hoffmann Travel and Philippa Walker, Silversea

Quark Expeditions

Expedition Ships – Four-Star ship, Five-Star Experience

Louise Goldsbury, Cruisey Life editor with Tenille Hunt, Quark Expeditions

Abercrombie & Kent

Luxury Operator

Andrew Conway, Signature Media with Ann-Marie Chapman, Abercrombie & Kent

Norwegian Cruise Line

Ship-within-a-Ship

Leanne Fogany, Norwegian Cruise Line; Guy Dundas, LATTE and Michelle Wiederman, Norwegian Cruise Line

“As a leader in the contemporary sector, Norwegian Cruise Line is renowned for our innovation and as a brand we have carved out our own unique category. We aim to become the best global holiday choice – not just a great cruise holiday but an overall experience that is unrivalled on land or sea.

“We cater for all types of traveller and demographic – our “ship within a ship” concept known as “The Haven” is a perfect example of this. We offer an exclusive VIP enclave where our guests not only receive priority service, their own pool, restaurant and butler – but they are tucked away from the rest of the ship with the added bonus of still being just steps away from the award-winning entertainment and dining choices we offer.

“It is truly the best of both worlds – and no surprise that it so popular with our guests. Hence, we are thrilled to be recognised for this prestigious award from Signature Media,” said Michelle Wiederman, NCL Marketing Director APAC.

Hurtigruten Expeditions and Ponant

Sustainability Recognition

Joel Victoria, Hurtigruten; Guy Dundas, LATTE; Charles Boutet and Deb Corbett, PONANT; and Damian Perry, Hurtigruten

“We want to extend our heartfelt appreciation to Cathy, Cara, Guy and the entire Signature Luxury Travel & Style team for organising a brilliant event. Your dedication to recognising excellence and fostering a sense of community is commendable, and we’re grateful to have been included on the day.

“We’re honoured and privileged to receive this Sustainability Recognition Award.

“On the back of our Sustainability win at the NTIA Awards, it’s been a fantastic couple of weeks. Having our work in this important area recognised by our partners, media and peers is a truly humbling experience.”

“Sustainability isn’t a competition; it’s a collective responsibility. We acknowledge the many sustainability initiatives undertaken by fellow brands. The more we can collaborate and share best practices, the greater our collective impact on the environment.”

“This award ends 2023 on a high for HX Expeditions and Hurtigruten Norway,” said Damian Perry, Managing Director, VP Sales & Marketing, Asia-Pacific

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