20 APAC / Issue 10 2018 , Already operating in Vietnam’s Nha Trang Bay and Bai Tu Long Bay, under the five-star Emperor Cruises brand name, Heritage Cruises, a member of the Lux Group, will launch its first boutique cruise in the Cat Ba Archipelago in the Tonkin Gulf under the brand name of Heritage Cruises. The company announces the launching of its website and first cruise photos at www.heritagecruises.com and promoting through various travel trade shows and roads shows in Asia, Europe, North America and Latin America. Heritage Cruises introduces the first Vietnamese heritage and boutique cruise on the Red River and the Gulf of Tonkin. Launching in May 2019, Heritage Cruises will offer authentic experiences for 40 guests aboard an architecturally designed boutique river and ocean cruise ship in the Gulf of Tonkin. Amenities include a luxury spa, movie under stars, two restaurants, indoor and outdoor lounges, pool bar and swimming pool and 20 suites with picture windows offering river and ocean views. As defined by The National Trust for Historic Preservation, “Cultural heritage tourism is traveling to experience the places, artifacts, and activities that authentically The Lux Group to Launch Vietnam’s First Boutique Cruise represent the stories and people of the past and present. It includes cultural, historic, and natural resources.” Heritage Cruises derives the inspiration for its boutique concept and design from the heritage ships of the patriotic entrepreneur Bach Thai Buoi, who transformed transportation on the waterways of Tonkin in the north of Vietnam in the early 20th century. Being a heritage-inspired designer cruise ship, but still with a boutique concept, Heritage Cruises care about the guest experience, offering them an upscale lifestyle with an artistic twist, together with concierge services. “Like boutique hotels, boutique cruises are characterized by their intimate atmosphere and idiosyncratic style. They distinguish themselves from larger chain cruises by offering personalized attention and stylish, themed accommodation and a story to tell. We want to create memorable moments that focus on the local culture and arts encountered on the way,” said Pham Ha, CEO of Heritage Cruises. “Our boutique cruise categorizes its ships not with stars but by character, quality, style and the overall unique experience of staying there. As Heritage Cruises’ first boutique cruise, which is positioned as four-star rating for the whole experience, we want to raise the bar for the art of cruising in the Halong Bay region. We ensure we give our clients the ‘ultimate in luxury and sophistication’ and ‘out of the ordinary on-board facilities.’ Your feedback and social media reviews are important to us and may even affect the official star rating of our property.” Beyond offering a cozier atmosphere, the small size of this ship creates a completely different experience, both onshore and on board. Smaller ships allow easy access to remote, less-visited places that the larger vessels just can’t get to, leading to refreshingly unique itineraries. This authentic experience offers the chance to cruise the Gulf of Tonkin (Lan Ha Bay, Bai Tu Long Bay, and Halong Bay) in an authentic and unique style, complemented by personalized service and on-request limousine transfers, which Heritage Cruises offers, taking the 5B highway from Hanoi to cut the journey down to just 1.5 hours. Heritage Cruises is available for FITs (free independent travelers), small groups and charters. This top-notch cruising experience is for repeat travelers to Vietnam wanting something different, exotic, and out of The LuxGroup to launchVietnam’s first artful boutique cruise in the Gulf of Tonkin and on the Red River, Vietnam. the ordinary. The exclusive cruising experiences are highly recommended for heritage travelers, seasoned leisure travelers, active holidaymakers, honeymooners, families, fine- art enthusiasts, nature lovers, photographers, groups of friends, VIPs and celebrities. Cat Ba is the largest of the 366 islands spanning the 260km2 seascape that comprises the Cat Ba Archipelago, which makes up the southeastern edge of Halong Bay in northern Vietnam. Cat Ba Island has a surface area of 285km2 and retains the dramatic and rugged features of Halong Bay. This island belongs to Haiphong City – an important industrial city which, together with Hanoi and Halong, forms an important economic triangle in north Vietnam. Approximately half of Cat Ba Island is covered by its national park, which is the home to the highly endangered Cat Ba Langur. The Cat Ba Archipelago boasts pristine beaches, secluded lagoons, coves, tropical forests, and lakes, allowing holidaymakers to swim, kayak and bike to fully experience the Gulf of Tonkin. The itinerary also includes the fishing villages of Lan Ha Bay, and watersports such as kayaking, squid fishing, snorkeling and wildlife spotting.