Portland, ME Malone Commercial Brokers negotiated the sale of VIP Tour & Charter, a motor coach tour and charter company founded in 1985, to Conway Scenic Railroad. They will also be purchasing the real estate in the near future. Their plan is to occupy this location for many years to come.
Conway Scenic Railroad is on track to revolutionize the cruise experience in Portland, with the acquisition of VIP Tour. The deal, brokered by Karen Rich and Cheri Bonawitz of Malone Commercial Brokers, marks a milestone in Conway Scenic Railroad’s strategy to grow and diversify its offerings.
Rich said that from the first meeting between the buyer and the seller, “the synergy and mutual respect was evident immediately.” Lana Sawyer, the owner of VIP, expressed her gratitude, said, “Karen has truly been a pleasure to work with. It took some time to find the right people, but Karen didn’t give up on us. She was very instrumental in our journey to the end - day or night through thick or thin.”
For Dave Swirk, co-owner of Conway Scenic Railroad, the expansion is about creating a superior and rewarding experience for guests from around the world. As he noted to Seatrade Cruise News, “This is so rewarding to me. It’s so unique. It brings joy to my heart to see people enjoying this. You want to feel like you did something to make a difference in the world. This makes a difference.”
In emphasizing the significance of the VIP name, Rich said, “Dave felt that the VIP name was essential to maintain as it has such a long and outstanding history in the transportation industry since they began 38 years ago.”
Sawyer shared her excitement for finding the right buyer, pointing out that Conway Scenic Railroad is “the perfect match for VIP Charter Coaches.” According to her, they share the vision and possibilities for VIP in the future.
The absorption of VIP Tour includes a fleet of eight tour buses, two transit buses,and five shuttle vans which will enhance flexibility and allow for more competitive pricing for cruise lines. The company aims to create new and exciting tours in and around Maine, in addition to the train journey.