Virgin Voyages shares its first brand impact report
The firm reveals how it works to offer unforgettable journeys at sea while making a positive difference for people and the planet
The first impact report highlights Virgin Voyages' environmental, social and governance objectives as the company expands its fleet and global operations. The brand's ESG strategy is based on five key areas essential to delivering on its purpose, including:
The Sailors: Providing Transformative Life Experiences
Our Ocean: Ensuring a Healthy Future for Our Ocean
Our Communities: Building Positive Business Relationships
The Partners: Developing Open and Rewarding Partnerships
The team: providing a caring and generous workplace
Epic curation, authentic experiences and delivering them responsibly is at the core of every decision Virgin Voyages makes. Research indicates that more than 70% of past boaters acknowledge that Virgin Voyages takes its commitment to social and environmental responsibility very seriously. In fact, 50% say their journey with Virgin inspired them to live more sustainably, an encouraging statistic says Jill Stoneberg, senior director of sustainability and social impact.
“From ethically sourced food and beverage ingredients to reusable items and reef-safe sunscreens, our team has worked hard to integrate sustainable practices into the onboard offering,” says Stoneberg. “We have eliminated unnecessary single-use plastics, and the only advice we ask for is ocean conservation advice. Together, these efforts not only minimize the impact we have on our oceans and communities, but we hope they inspire others to make a difference."
The design of Virgin's four Lady Ships was conceived by the Creative Collective of the most talented minds in the fields of hospitality, architecture and interior design. In building the vessels and identifying partners to collaborate with, Virgin Voyages set out to align with like-minded organizations. On board, for example, are Yellow Leaf hammocks handwoven in Thailand to curb deforestation, sustainably sourced coffee beans from Intelligentsia, and Coral Eyewear sunglasses made from recycled plastic. Virgin Voyages is proud that more than 25% of its retail partners have committed to driving positive social or environmental impact.
Other highlights from the impact report include the diversity of Virgin Voyages' crew, representing 95 different nationalities from all walks of life. In a recent survey, 87% of crewmembers reported that they feel they can be themselves at work, a huge win and a testament to the company's ideals of "coming as you are." Our crew is passionate about social and environmental causes and donated over 500 volunteer hours in 2021 to give back to the communities in which we operate.
With two ships currently in operation and two additional ships set to join the fleet, Virgin Voyages is already making a splash. In its first year of operations, Virgin Voyages welcomed its beautiful LEED Gold cruise terminal overlooking downtown Miami, worked with the Port of Miami to bring Shore Power to Magic City, and received major accolades for its epic sailing experiences both on the ship and on land. Scarlet Lady was named "Best New Cruise for 2021" by Cruise Critic, with both Scarlet and Valiant Lady receiving top spots on Condé Nast Traveler's list of cruise ships for 2022.
Tom McAlpin, CEO of Virgin Voyages, recently participated in the Aspen Idea Climate Summit at Virgin Voyages Terminal V and spoke about Shore Power and the company's sustainable future. “Climate change is one of the biggest threats facing our ocean, but we are proud to have one of the most efficient fleets at sea. We have invested in cutting-edge technologies like Climeon and are committed to achieving net zero carbon emissions by 2050. We have more work to do, but we are incredibly proud of our progress.”