Dubai’s busy cruise season continues as five vessels dock at same time

By admin Wednesday, 21 January 2015 10:20 AM

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Mina Rashid welcomes over 25,000 cruise passengers over the weekend at its cruise terminals; Cunard’s Queen Mary 2 to arrive on 29th January


Dubai, UAE, 20 January 2014: For the first time in its history, Mina Rashid has welcomed five cruise ships at the same time, last week. Over 25,000 passengers and crew of the Costa Serena, AIDA diva, Amadea, MSC Orchestra and Costa neoRiviera, docked at the port over the weekend.

The busy cruise season will see another landmark later this month with the arrival of Cunard’s Queen Mary 2 on 29 January with over 4,500 passengers joining another vessels already in port.

Dubai’s cruise season started in October 2014 with the arrival of the Rotterdam and a major highlight was the opening of the ultra-modern third cruise terminal inaugurated by His Highness Sheikh Hamdan Bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai in December.

HE Sultan Ahmed bin Sulayem, Chairman of DP World, said: “The success in handling five mega passenger vessels at one time demonstrates Dubai’s ability to embrace the growth in cruise tourism and the readiness of the infrastructure at Mina (Port) Rashid.

“With the opening of the new Hamdan bin Mohammed Cruise Terminal last month, the efficiency with which we look after thousands of passengers simultaneously was enhanced further, with the support and close cooperation of DTCM, our strategic partner in promoting cruise tourism in Dubai.  I would like also to thank all overnment departments involved for their cooperation in carrying out this operation.

“In line with the vision of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, UAE Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, to make Dubai and the UAE a centre for tourism, we are committed to investing long-term in the transformation of Mina Rashid into the region’s cruise destination of choice.”

Hamad bin Mejren, Executive Director, Dubai Tourism said: “This cruise season is in full swing and we are forecasting further growth for the sector. DP World recently opened the newest 28,000m2 terminal at Mina Rashid and this extra capacity will allow us to welcome even more ships than we did last season. We have ambitious targets for cruise visitors as part of the Tourism Vision for 2020 and we expect to welcome 450,000 cruise visitors by 2016. We are confident these figures are achievable given the new Multiple Entry UAE visa for cruise tourists which will open new source markets for us like India and China.”

Other cruise ships calling at Dubai from the Mediterranean, Northern Europe, North Africa, India and Sri Lanka, the Far East, Australia, and North America, as well as closer destinations in the Arabian Gulf.

The Hamdan bin Mohammed Cruise Terminal is the world’s largest and most modern covered cruise facility, enabling award winning Mina Rashid to serve up to seven cruise vessels at one time and handle more than 25,000 passengers in its cruise terminals.

It has strong green credentials having been built using re-cycled materials, including the steel structure, interlocking bricks, and shipping wood pellets for interior finishing. Features include a Green Wall Shade System to reduce solar ingress, controlled LED and daylight illumination, landscaping and irrigation supply.  It also provides bicycle and electric car parking with charging stations.

In December, Mina Rashid was voted as the World’s Leading Cruise Port for the seventh time at the prestigious World Travel Awards 2014, competing against some of the finest cruise ports around the globe.