PORT ST. MAARTEN – Port St. Maarten management said over the weekend that the industry is back in gear prompting a staggered approach to the resumption of cruising. Destination St. Maarten forms a pivotal part of this approach and will be welcoming more than 1000 passengers to its shores.
Port management in a sector update said that they’ve had a lot of communication with key local stakeholders and the cruise industry in regard to protocols and the safest and feasible way of business resumption.
The team at Port St. Maarten and port users are ready to welcome, host and entertain the passengers as they return some 15 months later.
In addition, Port management said that coincidentally Celebrity Edge was actually the last commercial transit vessel that visited the country back in March 2020, and this week it will come back full circle. The port is looking forward to frequent/daily transit calls to the destination in the coming weeks and months.
“As Minister of Public Health, Social Development and Labour, I am extremely happy to be a part of ‘safe tourism.’ At times it is not easy, but when a balance is found between economic activity and safety, it becomes a special moment, and Wednesday July 7th, 2021, will be a special moment,” Minister Omar Ottley stated.
Cruise sector forecasting is currently indicating a strong rebound and the port is looking to local stakeholders such as the taxis, retailers and tour operators to continue to maintain high service level standards along with local COVID-19 public health and safety protocols.
The Celebrity Edge cruise ship, described as the new home of modern luxury cruising, will be making a transit commercial cruise call to Port St. Maarten on Wednesday July 7.
The Royal Caribbean Group brand vessel was the first ocean going cruise ship to set sail on June 26 from U.S. Port Everglades after 15-months of no-sail.
The destination remains a favorable port of call for the cruise industry in connection with regular scheduled destination port of calls throughout the week. Scheduled port calls are important to the destination as it will allow passengers to explore the Island in a safe manner for a couple of hours as was done pre-COVID-19 pandemic.
Celebrity Cruises recently said in a statement that nine of the 14 ships within its brand have plans to return to sailing by mid-September 2021 and are ready to take guests to remarkable destinations from the Caribbean to Europe, Alaska, and the Galapagos islands.
Celebrity Edge has a gross tonnage of 130,818; is 1,004 feet long; beam of 128 feet and a draft of 28 feet; 15 decks.