Starboard Cruise Services announces executive leadership appointments

By Luke Barras-hill |

L-R: Benito Mendez and Caryl Capeci.

Caryl Capeci has been named Senior Vice President Fine Jewelry & Watches and Benito Mendez as Senior Vice President of Merchandising and Planning, Starboard Cruise Services has announced.

Capeci, who joined the LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton cruise retailer earlier this year as a strategic advisor, will draw on her 30 years’ experience in the jewellery industry.

Her resume includes spells as the CEO of Chow Tai Fook North America, the parent company of diamond jewellery brands Hearts on Fire and Mémoire.

Prior to that, she held a number of leadership positions at Hearts of Fire, including as its President.

In addition, she has led the agency marketing teams for DeBeers Diamonds at JWT (J. Walter Thompson), Royal Caribbean and Celebrity Cruises as an EVP at Havas/Arnold.

Cruise rebound bodes well for jewellery & watches

In a statement, Starboard says Capeci’s appointment to the jewellery & watches segment is designed to strengthen the company’s commitment as the best-in-class retail partner at sea.

The company says the strong rebound of the cruise sector perfectly positions luxury retail to capture a greater share of the fine jewellery and watches market, offering brands ‘a highly unique and experiential approach to retail’ so guests can understand the brand during the voyage and remember their journey with a special purchase.

Carnival Cruise Line has partnered with LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton company Starboard Cruise Services to introduce a new retail offering onboard Carnival Venezia.

Meanwhile, Mendez rejoins the Starboard Merchandising and Planning team having spent 16 years with the company in multiple senior roles.

He is tasked with leading Starboard’s global merchandising strategy, working closely with the company’s portfolio of product brand partners.

Boasting a career spanning more than two decades, the seasoned retail executive previously led the retail strategy, product development, e-commerce and licensing for Hard Rock International.

With a proven track record of driving revenue growth and operational excellence, Mendez has held various merchandising roles after beginning his professional journey with Macy’s in the executive management programme.

“Caryl and Benito’s robust experience in their respective fields are key additions to our leadership team to help drive our continued growth,” said Lisa Bauer, President and CEO of Starboard Cruise Services.

“Caryl’s unique leadership background in the jewellery industry, combined with the high demand for luxury retail offerings and experiences onboard, made her transition into the Starboard family very organic.

“We are thrilled to welcome Benito back. His significant cruise retail experience, diverse skill set, leadership abilities, and passion for excellence are a perfect fit for our leadership team.”

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