Friday, May 6, 2011

New Venture for Cruise West Chairman

Punta Espinoza (Fernandina) Galapagos
What's Next for Dick West of Cruise West?

September 18, 2010, Dick West, them Chairman of Cruise West, announced the cessation of operations of his small cruise company that had been founded by the late Chuck West in 1973.  This was a sad day for the cruise industry, and for lovers of small cruise ships alike.

Cruise West early success was in Alaska and later the company branched out to other locations where small ships could explore areas that the big boys couldn't.    One of those locations was Galapagos.  

When Cruise West stranded passengers last year, Dick West had worked with their Galapagos partner, Canodros,  to provide alternative options for guests booked on the cruises that were to depart through 2011.   

Shortly after the demise of the company, Dick West had indicated that he intended to return to the cruise industry, but that he would not own ships, but rather would work with other vendors to provide a similar small ship experience.   

Travel Weekly is reporting that the former chairman of Cruise West would launch his comeback cruise and tour venture in the Galapagos by the end of this year and will start taking bookings this summer.  The article indicates that the new company, Explor Tours, would offer a product similar to Cruise West.

We will monitor this story and bring you additional details as plans are unfolded.   A quick search of the internet finds another company with a similar name, so we will have to see if that is indeed the final name of the emerging cruise company.

Galapagos is one of those once-in-a-lifetime destinations that end up on most cruise enthusiasts bucket lists.   This is typically one of the most expensive cruises that you'll take.   It will be interesting to see the response he gets to his new venture.    We wish him success.

No comments: