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Horizons Unbound : The Jurgen Bailom Legacy

In Conversation with Jurgen Bailom President and CEO Waterways Leisure Tourism Pvt Ltd, Cordelia Cruises  Share your remarkable 30-year journey and insights in the hospitality and cruise industry. What excites you the most about being part

Over the past three decades, my journey in the hospitality and cruise industry has been nothing short of remarkable. It’s been a journey filled with challenges, growth, and most importantly, an unwavering passion for delivering unforgettable experiences to our guests. From my early days working for other cruise ships to my current role as CEO of Cordelia Cruises, India’s leading premium cruise line, I’ve had the privilege of witnessing the evolution of the industry firsthand. I’ve seen how technology has transformed the guest experience, how sustainability has become a central focus, and how the demand for unique and immersive travel experiences continues to grow.
What excites me the most about being part of the cruise industry is the opportunity to create moments of magic for our guests. Whether it’s watching the sunset over the ocean from the topmost deck of the ship, indulging in delicious dining experiences, or exploring breathtaking destinations around the world, the cruise industry allows us to turn dreams into reality for our guests.

The cruise industry is continuously evolving, driven by changing consumer preferences, technological advancements, and global trends. Today’s travellers seek more than just a vacation; they crave immersive and authentic experiences. We, at Cordelia Cruises, are responding by offering unique shore excursions that allow guests to explore local cultures, cuisines, and landmarks. There is a growing emphasis on sustainability within the cruise industry. Consumers are increasingly conscious of their environmental footprint, and cruise lines are responding by implementing eco-friendly practices.

Expansion requires a strategic approach that takes into account the unique dynamics of each region. At Cordelia Cruises, we have developed comprehensive strategies aimed at capturing market share and establishing our presence. In the Indian market, understanding local preferences and catering to the diverse needs of Indian travelers is essential. This includes offering Jain, vegetarian and non-vegetarian dining options, providing entertainment that resonates with Indian culture, and incorporating elements of Indian hospitality into our service offerings.

 We forge strategic partnerships with travel agencies, tour operators, and other industry stakeholders to expand our distribution network and reach a wider audience.
We at Cordelia place a strong emphasis on delivering exceptional customer experiences that exceed expectations and create lifelong memories for our guests. This includes investing in training and development programs for our onboard staff to ensure that every guest interaction is positive and memorable.

Guests aboard Cordelia Cruises can indulge in a culinary journey at the Starlight Restaurant, where Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner are included. From sumptuous breakfast buffets to delectable lunch and dinner options, the Starlight Restaurant offers a diverse menu featuring Indian and international cuisines prepared by our skilled chefs. For a more casual dining experience, guests can visit the Food Court, where a wide array of quick bites and snacks are available throughout the day. Guests can savor a variety of dishes while enjoying panoramic views of the sea. Those craving authentic cuisine with a private dining experience can delight their taste buds at Chopstix, a specialty restaurant onboard Cordelia Cruises.
As for entertainment on-board, there’s always something happening in some part of the cruise hence it’s never a dull moment for guests on board.
Whether it’s blackjack, roulette, poker, casino nights, or live bands and DJs at the deck there’s something for everyone to enjoy as they dance the night away under the stars. Cordelia Cruises offers a lineup of captivating entertainment shows that promise to dazzle and delight guests. From the vibrant and energetic flagship show “Balle Balle” to the mind-bending illusions of the “Magician’s Cut” and the mesmerising “Indian Cinemagic Show,” and the “Burlesque Show” with an Indian touch there’s no shortage of excitement onboard.

We have 796 rooms across 11 decks, including the 1 Chairman’s Suite, 5 suites, 63 Mini suites, 416 Ocean View Staterooms, and 311 interior statement rooms. Our total guest capacity is 1592 (on double occupancy) persons and 1950 in total.

The key to success in the cruise industry lies in a steadfast commitment to delivering exceptional guest experiences, innovation, and operational excellence. Aspiring professionals should focus on gaining diverse experience in hospitality, tourism, and related fields. Embrace opportunities for continuous learning, stay updated on industry trends, and prioritize guest satisfaction above all else. With dedication, passion, and a customer-centric approach, success in the cruise industry is attainable for those willing to invest in their growth and development.

There’s a noticeable surge in domestic cruise tourism as more Indians opt for cruise vacations. Major port cities in India, such as Mumbai, Kochi, Goa, Chennai with the help of The Indian Government are investing in infrastructure to accommodate larger cruise ships and enhance passenger facilities. This includes the development of new cruise terminals, berthing facilities, and improved connectivity to popular tourist destinations.

Honorable Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s encouragement for Indians to visit Lakshadweep is a significant endorsement that highlights the immense potential of the archipelago as a tourist destination. His support underscores the natural beauty, cultural richness, and tourism opportunities that our country offers. Furthermore, promoting tourism to Lakshadweep aligns with the government’s broader initiatives to develop tourism infrastructure, promote sustainable tourism practices, and showcase India’s natural beauty to the world. It also serves as a catalyst for socio-economic development in the region, empowering local communities and preserving indigenous cultures.

– We have been operating cruises to Lakshadweep since our inception in 2021. Prime Minister Modi’s endorsement has sparked increased interest in Lakshadweep among travelers, leading to higher demand for cruise itineraries in Lakshadweep. This has resulted in positive impacts for both Cordelia Cruises and travellers, including enhanced tourism infrastructure, greater cultural exchange, and a boost to the local economy in Lakshadweep.



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