Ritz-Carlton Yacht Collection contemplates five more ships
Douglas Prothero, chief executive of The Ritz-Carlton Yacht Collection told Aspire of his intentions to expand his brand and expectations of the Marriott group's developing cruise proposition, believing it to have "enough brands to diversity (into cruise) for quite a long time".
Currently Ritz-Carlton has three 298-passenger and 149-suite vessels on order, the first launching in 2020 followed by two in 2021.
Prothero said that while expansion was on the cards for the Ritz-Carlton yacht brand, it was important it remains a niche and specialised product.
"We're going to build more yachts," he said. "We don't know exactly how many more but the intent to build is there. We have one in 2020, two in 2021 and then we expect one or two in 2022 (currently not ordered).
"We want to maintain a niche designation; we could easily build 20 of them but we won't. I think six, seven, eight ships won't be a problem for us."
The cruise veteran said he was aware other cruise lines were "unhappy" with their new entry into the market.
He attributed that to being because of Ritz-Carlton's brand awareness internationally and that Marriott's group of brands would likely follow suit in launching "on the sea".
"We'll do other cruise ventures under Marriott, and that's part of the reason why other cruise lines aren't happy with our arrival in the market because they know we won't stop with Ritz-Carlton.
"Any number of our hotel brand would work as a cruise brand. We won't go head to head with ourselves within the group. We're doing luxury with Ritz-Carlton and we could do upper premium and premium. We have enough brands to diversify for quite a long time."