Seabourn, the world’s finest ultra-luxury cruise line, has named Stig Betten as captain of its newest vessel, Seabourn Ovation, and Helmut Huber as hotel director. Betten will oversee all operations of the line’s newest vessel, which is scheduled to launch in May 2018 in Italy. Huber will oversee the hotel department, which includes suites, housekeeping, and food & beverage services.
“These gentlemen are two seasoned professionals and they will be fantastic as we launch Seabourn Ovation,” said Richard Meadows, president of Seabourn. “They both have years of luxury experience to guide them and our guests and crews have really enjoyed their distinct personalities during prior assignments on our ships. I’m confident they will do well as they provide leadership throughout the ship’s delivery and into the maiden season.”
Betten was born and raised in the small village called Surnadal on the west coast of Norway. Hailing from many generations of seafarers, it was natural for Betten to follow in the footsteps of his father, grandfather and great grandfather by choosing a career at sea. Betten began his seagoing career in 1997, initially with a Norwegian seismic exploration company. He joined Seabourn in 2001 and has worked his way up the ranks from Second Officer to Captain. He has been assigned on past Seabourn ships Pride, Spirit, and Legend, as well as Seabourn Odyssey, Seabourn Sojourn and Seabourn Quest, including being a part of the start-up team as Staff Captain during the construction of Seabourn Sojourn and Seabourn Quest. When he is not at sea, Betten enjoys spending time with his family in Istanbul. When visiting his hometown in Norway, he enjoys fishing, trekking and hunting.
Huber is a native of Innsbruck, Austria. He started his career in the cruise industry in 1992 as a busboy/assistant waiter, working his way up through various positions to the management level. After almost 10 years at sea, Huber decided to go back to university, acquiring several degrees and certificates. Once he completed his studies, he returned to the hospitality industry in Food & Beverage and Hotel Management positions at luxury properties before returning to the cruise industry in 2007. Huber joined Seabourn in 2015 as Hotel Director. He splits time between Innsbruck and Los Angeles during his time off, where he enjoys activities such as scuba diving, snow skiing, mountain biking and travel.
Seabourn Ovation will expand and build on the line’s award-winning and highly acclaimed Odyssey-class ships, which revolutionized ultra-luxury cruising with enhanced accommodations and innovative amenities when they were introduced between 2009 and 2011. Seabourn Ovation will maintain the line’s high ratio of space per guest, enabling highly personalized service. A sister ship, Seabourn Encore, launched to much acclaim in December 2016.
Designed by hospitality design icon Adam D. Tihany, Seabourn Ovation will feature modern design elements and innovations consistent with the line’s reputation for understated elegance in a yacht-like environment. The 40,350-GRT ship will be configured to carry just 600 guests, based on double occupancy. Every suite will also feature a private veranda supported by impeccable service.
Seabourn will continue to reveal updates about Seabourn Ovation via the dedicated microsite. Filled with imagery, details and news of the ship’s continuing progress, the microsite offers an inside look at the next addition to the newest fleet in the ultra-luxury category.