A&K snaps up Crystal Cruises but where and when will it sail again?

Crystal Symphony
By Linsey McNeill
Home » A&K snaps up Crystal Cruises but where and when will it sail again?

Luxury cruise ships Crystal Serenity and Crystal Symphony will return to service in 2023 after they were bought by A&K Travel Group.

A&K, which is co-owned by Silversea founder Manfredi Lefebvre d’Ovidio, has also bought the Crystal Cruises brand.

The two cruise ships are due to undergo ‘extensive’ refurbishment, said A&K, and return to service in 2023.

No date has been given for the first planned cruises, and an A&K spokesperson said they couldn’t say if it would be during the first or second half of the year.

Also, no details of planned itineraries have been revealed.

The ships will continue to operate under the Crystal brand, which was previously owned by Hong Kong-based Genting before its collapse.

“I am thrilled to start this new chapter and to be back in an industry that has always had, and always will have a special place in my heart,” said Manfredi Lefebvre d’Ovidio.

“Thirty-five years ago, my family acquired control of Sitmar Cruises, building three of the first purpose-built cruise ships, and 30 years ago my family pioneered a new way of cruising.

“Our goal was to deliver the best experience, pampering guests from all over the world with around-the-clock butler service and extraordinary culinary experiences.

“Selling the cruise business that belonged to my family for a quarter of a century was a difficult decision, as I knew I would miss this industry immensely. Therefore, when the opportunity arose to acquire Crystal Cruises, I did not think about it twice.

“Having next to me my incredible friend and inspiring leader Geoffrey Kent [co-owner of A&K] makes this venture even more enjoyable.”

Geoffrey added: “Even though it seems like yesterday, 30 years have passed since the Lefebvre family and I had our first ship together…Manfredi and I have been best friends and business associates ever since.

“The idea of combining the unparalleled onboard service that Crystal Cruises is known for, with the extraordinary tailor-made experiences Abercrombie & Kent has been successfully providing for our guests for the past 60 years, fills me with excitement, enthusiasm and pride.”

Crystal Cruises and Abercrombie & Kent will report to Cristina Levis, CEO of A&K Travel Group.

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