3 Investors Have Taken Over Royal Caribbean’s Mariner Of The Seas For The Ultimate Fitness Cruise
- A first-of-its-kind “ultimate fitness cruise” will sail from Miami, FL to the Bahamas from January 21-25, 2019, and it is being pitched mainly to “fitness fanatics.”
- The co-investors have taken over the entirety of Royal Caribbean’s Mariner of the Seas and have sold roughly 45% of available rooms to date.
- The cruise, which will include some of the more popular CrossFit Games athletes on board, will offer daily scheduled fitness classes led by athletes, coaches and trainers, workshops on elite nutrition and training strategies, athlete-curated meals, costume theme nights, and entertainment and shore excursions starring the athletes.
- Rooms range from $575 (in a shared room) to $2,600 in a suite.
Some people charter boats. Edward Ellis, Zak Leighton and Chris Brauser, 3 Cleveland, Ohio entrepreneurs, decided to take it a major step further and charter an entire Royal Caribbean cruiseship. On January 21, 2019, the Mariner of the Seas will set sail from Miami, FL and travel around various islands for 4 nights.
The tie to sports is that the cruise is being themed to be a sort of fitness voyage, featuring tons of CrossFit Games athletes such as Rich Froning (4-time winner of The Reebok CrossFit Games), Brooke Wells (3-time Reebok CrossFit Games competitor) and Josh Bridges (retired Navy SEAL turned CrossFit Games competitor). Those on board will be able to exercise and socialize with the athletes and partake in daily, customized classes that will dive into barbell technique, aerobic capacity, dumbbell method and sandbag classes.
Co-founder Chris Brauser thought that the CrossFit market was a good cruise candidate, because they are typically zealous, very communal and clique-ish.
Thus far, the cruise, called WOD on the Waves, has sold roughly 45% of its total occupancy, with approximately 20% of those who have purchased tickets being based in Florida. Brauser says that about one-third of those booked are “very international,” coming from countries such as Finland, Iceland, South Korea and New Zealand.
The co-founders need to get about 65% capacity to break even. If there are rooms left over, then they intend to donate tickets to active duty military on leave. The co-founders participate in the on-board spend, so it makes sense to fill the ship even if it means giving away rooms.
If the cruise is successful, then the co-founders would like to make it an annual event. They are also in talks with women’s soccer players to see if there is an opportunity to put together a cruise for that demographic as well.
My prior company was a banking compliance firm, and I was talking with some guys about what they would do with the money if they hit it big. One of the guys — Ed [Ellis] — owned a CrossFit gym and was very passioante about it. I told Ed that he should open up a CrossFit resort in Costa Rica. His brother, who specialized in business valuation was in the office next door and said the fixed costs are too high. ‘You need something you can rent like a cruise ship.’ That afternoon I called all the major cruise companies to figure out how the industry works. We spent about a year educating ourselves in the CrossFit market and the chartered cruise business, who’s been successful in the space and finding leaders we could copy.Chris Brauser, WOD on the Waves co-founder