Sarah Longbottom joined MSC Cruises as head of PR this week.
The role has been specially created and is an attempt by the firm to boost its awareness in the UK market.
Longbottom said: 'There is much untapped potential in the UK market for cruising and we anticipate a huge response to our new products and itineraries for next year.'
The company will continue to use Lucre Communications as its retained agency.
Longbottom was editor of Travel Weekly until the end of April. She has also been editor of B2B publications TTG Middle East & North Africa, based in Cyprus.