International Cruise and Ferry Review - Autumn/Winter 2019

Ports & Destinations International Cruise & Ferry Review 204 edCruise General Assemblies are widely lauded for their collaborative results and that was certainly true of the conference when it was hosted by Ege Port Kuşadası in Kuşadası, Turkey in early summer 2019. “We’re here to work together and learn from each other,” said Emre Sayın, CEO of Global Ports Holding, which operates Ege Port Kuşadası, as he welcomed delegates. “What happens in the East Mediterranean is good for the whole Mediterranean. We need to get and keep ships here.” Echoing his support, MedCruise president Airam Diaz Pastor added: “We’re in a golden age.” It’s not the first time that Diaz has remarked on the current bullish state of the industry, but it was an appropriate claim in a country that is once again looking forward to prosperous trade in this roving business. Diaz also gave a wider Mediterranean outlook for 2019, saying: “We expect over 30 million passenger movements this year, up 8.8% and an overall growth in calls of 2%.” The conference proceedings provided the usual expert guidance from cruise line delegates, and ports would be wise to adopt their suggested business development tactics. “Our differentiator is our itinerary and shore experiences,” said Martin Lister, head of itinerary planning and guest experience at Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines. “The important Turkey is bouncing back into the cruise business, hence the choice of Kus¸adası for the 54th MedCruise General Assembly this summer. Jon Ingleton shares event highlights MEDITERRANEAN: EVENT REPORT Eastern promise Top three Kus¸adası shore excursion combinations 1. The Three Eras: Ephesus and House of Virgin Mary and S ¸ irince Village 2. Wonders of the ancient World: Priene, Miletus and Didyma 3. Mystic Nature of Kus ¸ adası: Cave of Zeus, Dilek Peninsula National Park Olukludere Canyon Delegates enjoyed a gala dinner at the Library of Celsus in Ephesus, which is a popular attraction for cruise visitors