Cruise Industry

Frank Del Rio to leave Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings, replaced by Harry Sommer

Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings has announced that Frank J. Del Rio will retire as the company’s President & CEO on June 30th, 2023, with Harry Sommer already confirmed to replace him.

Del Rio will serve in a consultant capacity as a Senior Advisor to the Board through 2025, while Harry Sommer, currently President & CEO of Norwegian Cruise Line, will succeed Del Rio and will join the company’s Board of Directors, effective July 1st, 2023.

David J. Herrera, who has served as Chief Consumer Sales and Marketing Officer of Norwegian Cruise Linesince 2021, will in turn succeed Sommer as President of the cruise line, effective April 1, 2023.

Frank del Rio, President & CEO, Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings

Del Rio’s retirement marks the end of a career spanning three decades in the cruise industry. He has led the company since 2015 and prior to that led Prestige Cruise International, Inc., and its predecessor, which operated Oceania Cruises and Regent Seven Seas Cruises, from 2002 until its acquisition by Norwegian.

Del Rio founded Oceania Cruises in 2002, creating a new “upper premium” market space in the cruise industry.

During his time with Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings, Del Rio oversaw the expansion of the global fleet, with eight new vessels, as well as the introduction of the Harvest Caye private island. He also led the company through the COVID-19 pandemic, the most tumultuous time in its 56-year history.

Sommer has more than 30 years of cruise industry experience across sales, marketing, revenue management, passenger services, itinerary development and international business development and operations.

Harry Sommer (right) with Frank del Rio (left)

In addition to his role as President and Chief Executive Officer, NCL, Sommer expanded his responsibilities in recent months to include oversight for all of the company’s other revenue-generating functional areas, including Oceania Cruises, Regent Seven Seas Cruises and the tri-branded Onboard Revenue department.

“Leading Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings has been one of the most rewarding experiences of my professional career,” said Frank Del Rio. “My heartfelt gratitude goes out to our 39,000 team members around the globe whose innovation, tenacity and collaboration have strengthened this company and built the industry’s most passionate and loyal base of cruisers.”

Del Rio added that with the company solidly positioned for 2023, he felt now was the right time to hand over to Sommer, who he described as ideally suited to take the company into its next era.

“I am incredibly humbled to succeed Frank as this iconic company’s next President and CEO, and I’m grateful to have the unwavering support of him and the Board to lead the company as we embark on the next chapter for our storied brands,” Sommer said.

“I am proud to have been a part of the company’s successes during the last 15 years, and I look forward to the bright future ahead, including the transformational growth we have in the pipeline.”

Of his replacement at Norwegian Cruise Line, Sommer added: “I’m particularly happy that David will be leading Norwegian Cruise Line as he has been a key contributor to NCL’s success in recent years. With his strong financial, sales, marketing and business development background, David will be further empowered to guide the NCL brand on an accelerated path forward.”

Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings is the parent company of Norwegian Cruise Line, Regent Seven Seas Cruises, and Oceania Cruises. It is the third-largest cruise company in the world after Carnival Corporation and Royal Caribbean Cruises.

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