Warren Titus, ‘icon of elegance’ in cruise industry, dies at 94
By Johanna Jainchill
Warren Titus, a pioneer of the luxury cruise
industry, the first chairman of CLIA and
an industry icon, died on July 19 in Marin
County, Calif. He was 94.
Titus founded Royal Viking Line in 1973,
which was acknowledged in many circles
as the gold standard of luxury cruising. In
1987 he became the founding president of
Titus was also a key figure in establishing
CLIA, maintaining early on that passenger
shipping should have a single organization to promote cruising and educate travel
agents to market and sell cruises effectively.
“This man was an icon of elegance,” said
Larry Pimentel, CEO of Azamara Cruises,
who worked with Titus for almost a decade.
“The upmarket passenger shipping experience today is rooted and birthed by this titan of elegance and style. [Royal Viking] was
Royal because of Warren’s demeanor. Seabourn was unique because he set the style.”
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A native of Anacortes, Wash., Titus had a
decades-long career in passenger shipping.
After a stint in the Marine Corps, Titus
worked for a shipping agency that handled
passenger vessels calling in Hawaii. He was
president of North American operations for
the Peninsular & Oriental Steamship Navigation Co. in San Francisco in the 1960s.
He later became
the president of
vice president of fleet
operations for Seabourn, helped launch
Seabourn with Titus
after working with
him at Royal Viking.
He said Titus had an “unwavering commitment to the idea that profit followed quality.”
“His vision was that if one truly offered
a quality product and served guests as intelligent individuals, they would be willing
to accept higher prices and remain loyal to
the brand,” Rapp said. “I learned more from
him than from anyone else in my working
career. I know many industry executives
who would say the same.”
Mark Conroy, president of Regent Seven
Seas and one of Titus’ former colleagues at
Royal Viking, is one of those executives.
“I never heard him say a negative thing
about anyone, and I never heard anyone
have a bad thing to say about him,” Conroy
said. “He was always focused and dignified.”
to issue refunds
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A Honolulu air taxi operator has about
three months to give passengers refunds for
service it never provided or face a $25,000
fine, according to an agreement with the
In September, the FAA grounded Paragon’s aircraft, a Partenavia P-68, for airworthiness reasons, according to the July
17 DOT agreement. Paragon was sold in
November to a new owner, John Weiser,
the DOT said. The FAA later terminated
Paragon’s operating authority.
Meanwhile, Paragon customers complained to the DOT Aviation Consumer
Protection Division about overdue refunds.
Under the Federal Reserve’s Regulation
Z, merchants are required to process credit
card refund requests within seven business
days. Separately, the DOT requires airlines
to issue cash refunds within 20 days after
the passengers provided the appropriate refund request and documentation.
Weiser told the DOT he didn’t know
Paragon owed any refunds to passengers
when he purchased the company. “
According to Weiser, the previous owner verbally
assured him that there were no liabilities
owed by Paragon, although he did not
provide Weiser with any business records,
bank statements, passenger lists or evidence regarding completed or scheduled
flights,” the DOT said.