Cruise lines have an ambiguous heritage. They are in the transport as well as in hospitality industry. And they show it – they have a sailing crew headed by a Captain, and they also have a hospitality crew headed by a manager. And it was all borne of a charming mishap. Till the middle of the last century it took a leisurely four days to cross the Atlantic, a distance crossed in hours by flight technology that was increasingly stealing customers from ships. Few people got the idea that they could entice customers with added luxuries which would be the main attraction rather than the passage, an idea that inspired the Titanic and its brethren during the glorious days of ocean liners before the Wars.
Cruising later discarded all pretensions of providing transport, and launched into indulging the spirit of man with abandon. A cruise liner, thus, became a Xanadu, an enchanted island from Arabian Tales with charming beauty, tingling taste buds, simmering sensations, awe-inspiring sights, and a few relaxed days spent far away from the thousand worries and a hundred deprivations of a mundane life.
Cruise lines are the companies running the cruise ships. While some have passenger or cargo transport heritage, some are born as pure luxury peddlers. Expensive ventures with ruinous running expenditures, luxury lines are nevertheless becoming increasingly popular due to a rising middle class aspiring for upper class luxuries. Cruise lines around the world help manifest a dream that rise in the hearts of many.