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Joe12

New UPDATED Cruise Director (CD) List - starting from April 2018 onwards

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Happy Monday! Thanks all for the updates!

Adventure OTS - Activities Manager Daniel Dornas is filling in for a few weeks, then Mercedes LaFuentes is reported to be returning.

Allure OTS - Jimmy Rhodes returns March 11 for 4 months, then Mitch Merucci returns mid-July for 2 months.

 

Anthem OTS - Clo O'Connor early March until May 13, then Dennis Charles returns May 13 for 4 months. (Dennis has been onboard for much of Clo's tenure)

Brilliance OTS - Abe Hughes started March 31 until early-July, then Clo O'Connor will be CD from July until September 1. (need July handover date)

 

Empress OTS - Hugo Arenas began November 10 for 4 months. (then who?)

Enchantment OTS - Bobby Broughton returned April 6. (for 2 months or 4 months?)

Explorer OTS - Graham Seymour returned February 9 (until when?). Topi Ylönen returns June 8 until July 27. Graham is wanted to be kept on Explorer by the HD, so may be regular CD again for the rest of 2018.

Freedom OTS - Drew Devine starts March 17 until July 28, then Topi Ylönen returns July 28 until September 29, followed by Drew September 29 for 4 months.

Grandeur OTS - Bob Leininger began November 30 until April 14, then Mike Szwajkowski starts April 14 for 2 months, then Bob returns mid-June until October 6, then Mitch Merucci from October 6 until December 1, followed by Bob starting December 1 for another 4 month contract.

Harmony OTS - Marc Walker begins February 3 until April 21, then Dru Pavlov returns April 21 until August 4, then Marc returns again from August 4 until October 6.

Independence OTS - Tim Connor started March 15 until May 28, then Joff Eaton returns May 28 for the Summer season for 4 months.

Jewel OTS - Andrea Olivieri started February 25. (for 4 months?)

Liberty OTS - John Blair took over January 14 until May 27, and returns July 22 for 4 months. (Who will fill in for John's vacation?)

Majesty OTS - Susan Adams took over February 26. (for 4 months?)

Mariner OTS - Ricky Matthews is said to have taken over for the repositioning, dry dock and start of the Miami cruises. (Will Carlos Torres also be working on Mariner later this year, as initially reported?)

Navigator OTS - Simona Ferraiuolo took over March 25 for 2 months. (then who?). Cuddy Cudworth returns in August after a contract on Radiance.

Oasis OTS - Jeff Arpin returned early March for 2 months, followed by Dan Whitney early May for 4 months. (need dates)

Ovation OTS - Mike Hunnerup returned March 23 (for 4 months?).

Quantum OTS - Paul Rutter starts April 9 for 2 months and again in the Fall for 3 months. Who will fill in for Paul's vacation? Chris Brown?

Radiance OTS - Mitch Merucci started March 18 until April 18. Cuddy Cudworth is joining Radiance for his next contract. (dates unknown)

 

Rhapsody OTS - Elvis Pinto returned early February for 4 months. (then who?)

 

Serenade OTS - Carly Boileau returns February 5 (until when? then who?)

 

Symphony OTS - Michele Scarpato and Bobby Brown are the launch CD's, sharing duties. Current dates are unknown, but Michele will be CD in early-July, and Bobby for the TA. Marc Walker takes over November 9 in Miami until February 16. (He joins Oct 23 for a 17 day handover)

 

Vision OTS - Steve Davis returned April 6 until August 11.

 

Voyager OTS - Carlos Torres began late-January until late-May.

Where is Patricio Honores?

Jerome Sueur has reportedly left RCI. He is getting married soon.

Casey Pelter is now working shoreside for Celebrity as Manager of Entertainment.

Jamie Fentiman has been cleared to return, although does not have an assignment yet.

Graham Seymour is stepping back from cruise life after July 28, 2017 except for occasional fill-ins. (Graham is filling in on Explorer from Feb 9.)

Rich Edwards has unfortunately passed away in June 2017. RIP Rich.

John Perry has left Royal and is now Operations Manager at Hyatt Hotels (per LinkedIn)

Ken Rush works at corporate in Miami as RCI's Director of Entertainment. He may occasionally fill-in as CD

Amy Fickert-Southgate has taken a job shoreside as of June 8

Luke Aerowsmith is working at the corporate office in London

Gordon Whatman is retired, but will be filling-in from time-to-time if needed.

Allan Brooks works for Celebrity in their corporate office.

Richard Spacey is a CD with Celebrity

Becky Thompson works for Celebrity Cruises in their corporate offices in Miami.

Dave Chapman is a CD with HAL

James Andrews is a real estate agent in Sydney

Leo Papa is a Product Manager at Tauck Corp in Connecticut

Anna Bass is a make-up artist

João Pereira has returned to Royal Caribbean and is now the Cruise Sales Manager on the Liberty of the Seas.

Kirk Detweiler is now CD with Silversea cruises.

Simeon Baker - married a dancer, had a baby girl and is a sales exec at a Porsche dealer in Saskatchewan

Matt Baker - Sim's brother - Has sold the Tiddly and is now a radio presenter.

Kieron Buffrey - CD with Viking River Cruises and recently became a father to a lovely baby boy

Tom Canosa - teaching 6th grade science in North Carolina

Peter Benfield and Johnny Osborne have emigrated to Thailand

Anthony Richards is living in Miami with his wife, and is working for Royal Media Partners as Manager Port Revenue Operations

Rico du Breil is now a CD with SilverSeas out of Italy

Paul Lancaster is no longer with RCI, and resides in England

Abel Jeney is now with The World - Luxury Residence at Sea

Parker Cristan is living in Milwaukee, Wisconsin - staging/choreographing for local theater

Ashley Kerr - married and living in Vancouver BC, working as a marketing rep for a PR firm

Karen Maybury - has a consultant/pr/entertainment agency

Jannie Cloete - leading expeditions on small ships

Warren Allen (aka Warren Melhuish) lives in Ontario, Canada. He has retired from ship-life but still works on the stage

Thomas DeCell is no longer with RCI

Leigh Xuereb and his AM Frankie Portera are CD's for Carnival

Edited by Joe12

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I want to start a campaign! #joffforsymphony in Europe & TA then #abeforsymphony when in Miami. I do like Marc Walker though, and know that he will do a good job there.

 

Who is your favorite CD and name 2 CD's that you would nominate to do Symphony?

All of the news surrounding Symphony's maiden voyage is getting me excited, as you can tell! :)

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I would second Joff. Other than him, I have not had any outstanding cruise directors on Royal Caribbean.

 

Corinna

 

I am a huge Joff fan. Given the number of Brits that sail out of Barcelona on Oasis Class ships, he would be perfect for it. Just watched some clips of him on YouTube and he is hilarious. Abe Hughes is my other favourite and I would nominate him for the US inaugural season. There are other good CD's with Royal, but those guys are the top two that I have crossed paths with.

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I am a huge Joff fan. Given the number of Brits that sail out of Barcelona on Oasis Class ships, he would be perfect for it. Just watched some clips of him on YouTube and he is hilarious. Abe Hughes is my other favorite and I would nominate him for the US inaugural season. There are other good CD's with Royal, but those guys are the top two that I have met.

 

I have yet to come across Abe, but would like to. We loved Joff on the Ovation Suez Canal cruise. Other than him, we had Bill Brunkhorst on Splendour, Graham Seymour on Explorer and Chris Brown on Quantum, who were all nice enough and I would not mind cruising with them again if they happened to be on a ship I want to cruise on, but they also do not really stand out to me. And of course there was Mike Hunnerup on Navigator... You know what I think of him. I can't believe we have only done 5 Royal Caribbean cruises. It feels much more than this.

 

Corinna

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I have yet to come across Abe, but would like to. We loved Joff on the Ovation Suez Canal cruise. Other than him, we had Bill Brunkhorst on Splendour, Graham Seymour on Explorer and Chris Brown on Quantum, who were all nice enough and I would not mind cruising with them again if they happened to be on a ship I want to cruise on, but they also do not really stand out to me. And of course there was Mike Hunnerup on Navigator... You know what I think of him. I can't believe we have only done 5 Royal Caribbean cruises. It feels much more than this.

 

Corinna

 

Graham gets a reputation for being one of Royal's best. I heard that he was stepping back a bit, but the HD on EX seems to want him back full-time. I haven't heard much about Bill or Chris, mainly because neither seem to be based out of the USA, which is where most people who frequent this list seem to sail from.

 

As for Mike, it seems that most view him as a dud. This isn't particularly nice but I am surprised that Royal hasn't moved on from him yet, as I rarely ever read a positive review of him.

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Graham gets a reputation for being one of Royal's best. I heard that he was stepping back a bit, but the HD on EX seems to want him back full-time.

 

I had read only good things about him before our Explorer Transpacific last year and had high hopes that he may be a second Joff Eaton. I always suspecting that as he was halfway through what was supposed to be his final contract, he was coasting a little. He seemed friendly and personable enough when you saw him around the ship, but his AM Joe Chambers did most of the headline events. Now he definitely stood out. He was a complete riot and I would love to have him as a cruise director.

 

I haven't heard much about Bill or Chris, mainly because neither seem to be based out of the USA, which is where most people who frequent this list seem to sail from.

 

Again, both are friendly and personable, but low key. I think Chris may be held back by the fact that he does not speak Mandarin on a ship that mainly has Chinese passengers. That makes shining in his role a touch difficult.

 

Corinna

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I think Chris may be held back by the fact that he does not speak Mandarin on a ship that mainly has Chinese passengers. That makes shining in his role a touch difficult.

 

He seemed quite popular when he did the Australian sailings on Voyager and Legend.

Maybe they should send him to a USA based ship, as he seems like a young guy with plenty of potential as a CD. Being stuck in a harder market like China should be reserved for people like Fang Lixin (who is Chinese) or the likes of Mike Hunnerup, who are already invisible and that would let the Mandarin speaking AM run the show. BB would be another good option for China, as he is the closet equivalent to Mike that I have experienced.

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He seemed quite popular when he did the Australian sailings on Voyager and Legend.

Maybe they should send him to a USA based ship, as he seems like a young guy with plenty of potential as a CD. Being stuck in a harder market like China should be reserved for people like Fang Lixin (who is Chinese) or the likes of Mike Hunnerup, who are already invisible and that would let the Mandarin speaking AM run the show. BB would be another good option for China, as he is the closet equivalent to Mike that I have experienced.

 

I would agree with this assessment.

 

Corinna

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I am a huge Joff fan. Given the number of Brits that sail out of Barcelona on Oasis Class ships, he would be perfect for it. Just watched some clips of him on YouTube and he is hilarious. Abe Hughes is my other favourite and I would nominate him for the US inaugural season. There are other good CD's with Royal, but those guys are the top two that I have crossed paths with.

 

 

 

Abe is our favorite, followed by Joff. My hope is Royal discusses ship assignments with the CD and makes its decision who goes where, based on a mutual agreement.

 

 

Sent from my iPad using Forums

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Abe is our favorite, followed by Joff. My hope is Royal discusses ship assignments with the CD and makes its decision who goes where, based on a mutual agreement.

 

 

Sent from my iPad using Forums

 

Good point! I just think that with the exception of Marc, their choices for SY were a bit odd.

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Would you say that Joff could be good for Symphony's Barcelona season or do you think that those itineraries need a multi-lingual CD? Who do you think would be a good option for them? I would have said Jerome, but it seems that he isn't with Royal any more.

Per LinkedIn, Joff only speaks English.

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For the Symphony TA, the 4 Sisters at Sea would be a blast with Joff. He has been known to make fun of the smaller ships in port before. Oasis, Allure and Harmony would never hear the end of it!

 

Speaking of it, I hope that the 4 Sisters at Sea will be a thing. Would love to be there.

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Any other SY suggestions?

Ultimately this is more than a CD List - I love to hear feedback about different CD's in the fleet.

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The take out of sy looks bad the only one good there is Marc,they should of put Abe for the take out and then Marc and then Dru.

 

Sent from my Z982 using Forums mobile app

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As some of the ships move around location-wise in the months ahead...it's not unusual for the CD's to be shuffled around a bit as well.

 

It should be interesting to see where things are by September in terms of CD locations.

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The take out of sy looks bad the only one good there is Marc,they should of put Abe for the take out and then Marc and then Dru.

 

Sent from my Z982 using Forums mobile app

 

I agree.

Bobby - already talked about him. Should be on a Radiance or Vision Class ship with an older clientele, and kept as far away from Oasis Class as possible.

 

Michele - Heard he is a good CD. What is the problem? One word - Experience. He has only been a CD since the end of June 2016, so less than 2 years. Prior to Symphony, ignoring when he stepped up a couple of times while AM on AL, he has only served as a CD on two classes of ship in the fleet and in two regions - South Florida to Caribbean/Bahamas and 7NT Med cruises from Barcelona. IMO, it just seems that he hasn't covered enough as a CD yet to be taking out the newest ship. Still, I look forward to meeting him on SY in July.

 

Marc is a great CD with 17 years experience as one, has experience with most classes of ships and a variety of Europe and Caribbean itineraries, so is a perfect choice for the US season, but I don't understand the choice of the other two.

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As some of the ships move around location-wise in the months ahead...it's not unusual for the CD's to be shuffled around a bit as well.

 

It should be interesting to see where things are by September in terms of CD locations.

 

That's the fun of it - putting the pieces of the puzzle together. Things are always subject to change, especially with deployment changes.

 

If it were up to me, Royal would do it like Carnival and publish a provisional spreadsheet schedule in advance.

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Graham gets a reputation for being one of Royal's best. I heard that he was stepping back a bit, but the HD on EX seems to want him back full-time.

 

Joe, I just read your CD list and see that Graham Seymour will be our CD on the Explorer for our B2B British Columbia and Alaska cruises in May. It has been many, many years since we had him as our CD....we thought he was hysterical! I don't remember his assistant's name but he was British, young and had red hair! lol They played off of each other on their morning shows and it was the best cruise week! I still remember some of the skits! We've been on over 30+ cruises and while most are good, Graham in my mind, is the best. We'll see if he still will be my favorite in May! ;)

 

Did he leave RCI awhile ago....go to a different cruise company and then came back to RCI? Does anyone remember that?

 

Dee

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Joe, I just read your CD list and see that Graham Seymour will be our CD on the Explorer for our B2B British Columbia and Alaska cruises in May. It has been many, many years since we had him as our CD....we thought he was hysterical! I don't remember his assistant's name but he was British, young and had red hair! lol They played off of each other on their morning shows and it was the best cruise week! I still remember some of the skits! We've been on over 30+ cruises and while most are good, Graham in my mind, is the best. We'll see if he still will be my favorite in May! ;)

 

Did he leave RCI awhile ago....go to a different cruise company and then came back to RCI? Does anyone remember that?

 

Dee

 

He semi-retired a couple of times, but never really stepped back from full time duties on either occasion. He's been with Royal since he left Princess. I thought he handled Morning Show duties on his own?

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He semi-retired a couple of times, but never really stepped back from full time duties on either occasion. He's been with Royal since he left Princess. I thought he handled Morning Show duties on his own?

 

 

Like I said it was many years ago and in fact, it could have even been while we were on a Princess cruise. The interaction between him and his assistant what was made the morning show so funny.

 

Dee

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Here's a question!

If you had the opportunity to be the Cruise Director for 1 week on a ship, what would you be like?

 

If it were me, I would be like a British version of Abe Hughes. Would be as creative, funny and energetic as possible. An upbeat personality goes a long way, as evidenced by being on the same ship with two polar opposite CD's.

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Just watched the Captain's Corner on Symphony's pre-inaugural 5 day cruise. Michele was running it and seemed to communicate well with his Staff. That is a sign of a good CD. Stark contrast to BB, who stood with a surly look on his face and with his arms folded while Katy and the Staff were doing the Sailaway Party. He was in plain clothes but I recognized it was him straight away and it sort of set the tone for the week. It was a great cruise nonetheless!

I think the interaction with the team is important and shows a CD's true colours.

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Here's a question!

If you had the opportunity to be the Cruise Director for 1 week on a ship, what would you be like?

If it were me, I would be like a British version of Abe Hughes.

Let's get Chris Hopkins back!!!!!

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