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A look back at the Cruise Ship Interiors Expo, America

22nd November 2021

The SD Marine team have returned from a very successful visit to Miami, Florida where they attended the Cruise Ship Interiors Expo to showcase SD’s full range of services and meet fellow industry leaders of the cruise community.

The event took place from the 10th – 11th November at the Miami Beach Convention Centre, intended to give the global interiors and hospitality cruise community the chance to meet face-to-face for the first time since the Covid-19 pandemic.

Marine Director Gareth Preston was joined by fellow specialists Val Corneby, Paul Thomas, Steve Shaw and Kim Sealey at the conference, which is the world’s only exhibition exclusively dedicated to connecting the buyers, suppliers and industry leaders of the cruise design sector.

It was a very rewarding experience for the SD team, and gave our marine experts a chance to showcase their complete turn key service, which includes electrical, hard surface repair, French polishing, upholstery, painting & decorating for both refurbished and new build ships.

Day one of the conference began at 9am  with the invitation-only Newcomers’ Breakfast, while the following day will begin with the Founding Partners’ Breakfast.

At the Cruise Conversations Live event, the keynote speech for day one was titled ‘Design Leadership: We are One Cruise Industry’ and featured comments from Greg Walton, founding partner of design firm Studio DADO, and Petu Kummula, senior director of interior design and architecture at Carnival Cruise Line.

speakers at the cruise interiors conference, Miami

Day two, meanwhile, offered a session on ‘The Business Case for Sustainability,’ with speakers including Alexander Zeitz of Virgin Voyages, Yohandel Ruiz of Studio DADO, My Nguyen of Holland America Group, Paris Swann of Celebrity Cruises and Royal Caribbean, and Bergen Hubert of the Cradle to Cradle Products Innovation Institute.

On attending the conference, Marine Director Gareth Preston said: “This has been a brilliant experience for us, and has really given us a chance to put SD on the map. Special thanks must go out to our stand creators, HT International Exhibitions, who helped build one of the biggest, most striking stands at the conference which had everybody talking.”

SD stand lit up
SD stand in Miami


“Our initial team flew out on the 8th November, which was in itself a momentous occasion as we boarded the first flight leaving the UK for America after an 18-month freeze on US travel!

“The expo was organised brilliantly and allowed us to network with so many likeminded and key people within the industry who we might never have touched base with previously. Having an event like this be such a success has reminded us that we’re in it for the long haul and that our business is only going to get stronger – we have lots of new products to push in the market and we’ll be looking to add more strings to our bow over the coming months so we’re definitely looking forward to the next event like this one.”


The SD Marine team will soon be attending the Cruise Ship Interiors Expo Europe on the 1st – 2nd December at London’s ExCel, which provides a gateway for interior designers, architects, outfitters, shipyards and interior suppliers to meet with Europe’s ocean, river and expedition cruise line market working on major refurbishment and newbuild projects.

To find information on SD’s Marine Interiors service, visit

For the Cruise Ship Interiors Expo, visit


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