The Aruba-based Hewlett Packard Enterprise company announced that Virgin Voyages was deploying an end-to-end Edge Services Platform (ESP) network to deliver "world-class, premium experiences" aboard all 4 of their “lady ships.”
Virgin, which is working with DeCurtis Corporation, set out to create a technology-enabled cruise experience when the boats call at Oranjestad. Based in Plantation FL USA, Virgin is a joint venture between Virgin Group and Bain Capital.
The company currently has 2 ships deployed, and 2 more under construction, all with a max passenger capacity 2860 plus 1160 crew. As an exclusively adult experience, Virgin Voyages provides a sanctuary at sea for 18+ travelers with 20+ unique dining options, wellness-forward programming, and immersive entertainment.
The primary goal for the company is to deliver a premier Sailor experience through offering real-time services and always-on connectivity for the crew to facilitate fast and reliable service. For example, in case a crew sees a maintenance issue, they can open a repair ticket on the issued device, and it goes to the right person to address the issue. The technology is ubiquitous for the crew and transparent to Sailors, creating a 5-star experience wherever they are on the cruise ship.
Another major goal for Virgin is to provide location-based quality of service through location-based data. An example of this is via reducing the time Sailors stand in line. The cruise line created a virtual queuing system so that guests do not have to congregate in long lines. Instead, Virgin Voyages' app alerts them when it is their turn to board the cruise ship, enter the spa, sit for dinner, or disembark.
In order to achieve frictionless, location-based services enabling world-class Sailor services, Virgin looked to trusted technology partner DeCurtis Corporation. DeCurtis and Virgin were looking to transform existing experiences to make them better and faster through the creative application of the latest technology.
In cooperation with Aruba and DeCurtis, Virgin Voyages deployed a flexible and resilient Aruba ESP network which includes Aruba Wi-Fi 6 access points with built-in location services, and access switches. Additionally, Virgin uses ClearPass for NAC (network access control) and policy management, as well as AirWave for network management.