NEW YORK — Azamara has appointed Orlando Ashford as its incoming Executive Chairman.
Ashford, who previously served as president of Holland America Line from 2014 to May 2020, said he has “long admired” Azamara’s business and brand and believes that the boutique cruise line is “uniquely positioned in the industry.”
Earlier this month, Azamara’s parent company, Royal Caribbean Group, entered into a definitive agreement with Sycamore Partners, a private equity firm, to sell the luxury line. The deal is expected to close in Q1 of this year.
“We are pleased for Orlando to take on this role as Azamara embarks on its next chapter supported by Sycamore Partners,” said Stefan Kaluzny, Managing Director of Sycamore Partners. “Orlando brings significant leadership experience as well as specific expertise in the cruise and travel industry, making him well-suited to serve as Azamara’s Executive Chairman.”
Ashford’s appointment comes on the heels of Sycamore’s announcement this week that it plans to add a sister ship to the current fleet of Azamara Journey, Azamara Quest and Azamara Pursuit. Following a full-ship renovation, the fourth ship, which expands the fleet’s overall capacity by 33%, is scheduled to sail its inaugural season in Europe 2022. It will be named at a later date.
“We are thrilled to be expanding our fleet with a fourth ship, allowing us to visit even more regions of the world and better serve our guests,” said Carol Cabezas, President of Azamara. “With the recent news of a planned addition to the fleet, Orlando will bring perspective that will support expansion of the brand while maintaining and growing the unique programming and itineraries beloved by guests and travel industry partners.”