Thank You for Making Us #1

Because Grand Circle Cruise Line is an international company, I can't meet everyone on our worldwide team. But our Boston associates were lucky enough to speak with Luksa Ivancic recently, captain of the M/V Arethusa. The vessel is featured on our The Rivieras: France, Italy & the Isles itinerary (one of my favorite regions in the world to travel), and was named the #1 Small Cruise Ship in Condé Nast Traveler’s 2013 Readers’ Poll. Luksa, like me, is quite pleased with the accolades; but he’s really more proud because he’s from Croatia, where the Arethusa was built. “We read about [the honor] in the newspaper in Croatia, because it was built in our shipyard there. The people in the shipyard are proud of the ship, and that part is very exciting. I’m so proud to be able to captain the Arethusa, the reigning champion of the competition.”

It’s the same feeling I have now, because Grand Circle Cruise Line was just named the “#1 World’s Best River Cruise Line” by Condé Nast Traveler—for the second year in a row. This is the ninth year in a row we’ve made the list, and this year our 2013 score was even higher than before (an “Excellent” rating of 95.2).

Like Luksa, for me this was a real moment to celebrate. It’s wonderful to acknowledge our achievements with the photos and awards hanging on our walls at our home office in Boston. But like that shipyard in Croatia, it’s much more rewarding for me to greet associates as they walk through the door, because this Condé Nast honor isn’t only about our ships. The ranking is made based on people, crew members like Luksa and our expert, resident Program Directors, who give you the richest local experience possible.

That’s why the feedback that travelers like you shared with Condé Nast is some of the most special for me; it doesn’t come from magazine editors or professional travel writers. It comes from travelers like you—and that recognition is an award in itself.

On behalf of Grand Circle Cruise Line, we thank you for that, and hope to welcome you aboard again in 2014!