Carnival Corporation is a massive company with numerous cruise brands under their wing including: Carnival Cruise Lines, Holland America Line, Princess Cruises, Costa Cruises, and a few others. The tenth brand will be called simply, Fathom, and the ship to start-off this new cruise venture, Adonia, was taken from another one of Carnival’s brands, P&O Cruises, which caters mostly to passengers from the UK. The Adonia is a 30,000 ton vessel built at Chantiers de L’Atlantique in St. Nazaire, France in 2001, originally for Renaissance Cruises. The Adonia was one of eight ships built for Renaissance Cruises and she was originally named “R Eight”, because she was the last of eight ships built for the line, which filed bankruptcy in late 2001. The vessel has had several names with different cruise lines including: Minerva II and Royal Princess. In 2011 the Royal Princess was transferred out of the Princess Cruises’ fleet to operate with a sister company P&O Cruises and renamed Adonia.
It’s not unexpected for Carnival Corporation to launch a new cruise brand, however; it is unexpected for Carnival to have launched a unique cruise company like Fathom, which will engage in humanitarian efforts. Fathom will engage in “social impact travel”, offering to passengers the exclusive opportunities to reach out a helping hand in the cruise ports to help the less fortunate, and offer ongoing assistance with educational programs in third-world communities. Another way to explain what Fathom does is Volunteer Tourism. Many companies, tour operators and faith-based ministries have been conducting “volunteer tourism” for many years, in fact as the author of this article, I can say that since 1997 we have conducted several projects which we called a Cruise With A Purpose. I even wrote a book about the details of a Cruise With A Purpose and included several case studies as examples of what we did and how we did it. You can order my book Cruise With A Purpose at the following link: http://www.lulu.com/shop/barry-vaudrin/cruise-with-a-purpose/paperback/product-4394329.html
The Social Impact travel company Fathom, will begin it’s impact cruise series partnering with well-established organizations like Entrena and IDDI, or Instituto Dominicano De Desarrollo Integral, Inc. Fathom’s first mission will be to the Dominican Republic, where the Adonia will dock in Amber Cove, Puerto Plata for three days. Carnival Corporation spent 85 Million Dollars on Amber Cove, so that various cruise lines under the Carnival Corporation banner will be able to dock there. This area is fascinating because it is where parts of the first Jurassic Park movie was filmed. This is a very exciting project because now cruise passengers have an entirely new port to visit and explore. Amber Cove in Puerto Plata is also the perfect region for Fathom to reach out to the local people, and make a long-lasting and positive impact in the various nearby communities. For Carnival Corporation to develop the concept of Fathom, it shows that even a mega company like Carnival has a heart. Launching in April of 2016, Fathom’s first ship the Adonis, departs from Miami to the Dominican Republic with roughly 700 passengers eager to make a difference in the lives of people in the Puerto Plata area. Reservations can be made by visiting the Fathom website at www.fathom.org.
Cruise pricing aboard the Adonis with Fathom will start at $1,540 per person, and a portion of the cruise cost will go to the non-profit organizations that Fathom is working directly with in the Dominican Republic. Onboard the Adonis, passengers will enjoy a very traditional, upscale, luxurious environment with a fabulous grand staircase, fine wood paneling, and wonderful dining. It will be interesting to mix social impact immersion activities with a luxurious onboard experience. Passengers will go from a luxuriously appointed ship, to immersing themselves in a third-world country environment where some people may struggle daily with what to eat. It’s that contrast that will be a fascinating social experiment. Typically those who enjoy an upscale lifestyle tend to avoid placing themselves in an environment where they may see extreme poverty. Passengers onboard the Adonis will attend lectures and classes to prepare them for their outreach experience in the port. Some passengers may assist students in how to speak conversational English, while other passengers may help out in a factory that manufactures chocolate. Fresh water is a desperate need in the Dominican Republic, so Fathom passengers will be instrumental in the construction of water filters to be distributed to families and individuals throughout the community.
Fathom is truly making a long-term investment with this project to make a difference and make a positive impact in the communities in Puerto Plata and the surrounding areas. A long-lasting impact is the only way to have a successful outreach in areas like Puerto Plata, so that the efforts to stand along-side the local people will be an ongoing, purposeful activity for many years to come.
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