PORT ST. MAARTEN – Port St. Maarten Group (PSG) Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Alexander Gumbs and Acting Minister of Tourism & Economic Affairs Hon. Omar Ottley, recently met with a number of cruise executives in order to generate more business for the destination.
Carnival Corporation & plc as a long-term partner of PSG are working on positioning cruise ships from the nine brands which will create new opportunities for the destination for the upcoming cruise seasons.
Acting Minister of Tourism & Economic Affairs Hon. Omar Ottley stated, “Fruitful discussions were had with the Carnival Corporation & plc and Princess Cruises executives.
“The discussions with the executives were based around opportunities for additional calls for Princess Cruises which is looking to have a stronger presence in the Caribbean, and it is our goal to make sure St. Maarten remains at the forefront of the cruise industry.”
“Exciting times are ahead as we fine tune the details whereas a cruise port, we will pick-up more port calls from the Carnival group. The nine Carnival brands, eight of them currently visit the destination on an annual basis.
“Our deliberations also allowed us to connect with the President of Holland America Line Jan Swartz and President of Princess Cruises John Padgett,” PSG CEO Gumbs said on Tuesday.
Princess Cruises had an exclusive event for the unveiling of their most advanced ship to date the Sun Princess. During this event Gumbs and Minister Ottley had the opportunity to connect with Carnival Corporation & plc recently appointed CEO Josh Weinstein.
Sun Princess is a next-generation ship and is the first ship in the fleet to be powered by Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG). This cleaner burning fuel will significantly reduce air emissions and marine gasoil to minimize the cruise companies’ environmental footprint.
Gumbs said that the discussion with Padgett had a strong note to the Environmental goals outlined by the Cruise Line International Association (CLIA) 2030 carbon vision.
Gumbs added that PSG has been strengthening its compliance department which has been transitioning to include Environment, Social & Governance (ESG) principles aligned with the recently completed high level vision plan.
Sun Princess is the third ship to be honored with the Sun Princess® name, adding to the legacy of the first ship sailing from 1974 to 1988 and the second ship sailing from 1995 to 2020. At that time, she had the largest number of balcony cabins and the cruise companies’ first 24-hour cafe.
Sun Princess embarks on its inaugural cruise in 2024. The vessel will weigh in at 175,500 tons with an overall length of 1,133 feet. The next-generation ship will have 2,150 guest cabins and have a guest capacity of 4,300.
“Weinstein during our discussions showed full confidence in the cruise industry where it concerns its full return and benefits for the industry and destinations,” PSG CEO Gumbs pointed out.
Carnival Corporation & plc is the world’s largest leisure travel company with 92 ships sailing under nine cruise brands including Princess Cruises, famously known as the line of the Love Boat, and Cunard which built the world’s biggest ocean liner at the time, Queen Mary 2.
Carnival Corporation & plc’s 120,000 employees worldwide serve more than 13 million guests a year.
Carnival Cruise Line is the company’s biggest brand with 22 ships, operating 1,500 voyages annually, calling on ports from Cozumel to Ketchikan. The fleet’s largest ship, Panorama, can accommodate 4,008 guests.
The company’s portfolio of global cruise line brands includes Holland America Line, Seabourn, P&O Cruises (Australia), Costa Cruises, AIDA Cruises, and P&O Cruises (UK). Carnival Corporation also operates Holland America Princess Alaska Tours, the leading tour company in Alaska and the Canadian Yukon.