Carnival Corporation to Operate Santa Cruz de Tenerife Cruise Terminal in Canary Islands


Carnival Corporation today announced an agreement with the Port Authority of Santa Cruz de Tenerife following a Board of Directors meeting presided by Pedro Suárez López de Vergara to be the first concession-holder to operate the Canary Islands’ and Mid Atlantic’s newest cruise terminal.

The terminal can accommodate “green” ships powered by liquefied natural gas (LNG) and will welcome AIDAnova, from the corporation’s Germany-based AIDA Cruises brand, on its maiden voyage in December, Carnival said.

Welcoming 617,987 cruise passengers in 2017, Santa Cruz de Tenerife is one of the busiest cruise ports in the Canary Islands, the seven-island Spanish archipelago off the coast of Africa and Spain.

Carnival Corporation also manages two other cruise terminals in Spain – the Helix and Palacruceros facilities in Barcelona.

Seven brands from Carnival Corporation – AIDA Cruises, Costa Cruises, Cunard, Holland America Line, Princess Cruises, Seabourn and P&O Cruises UK – make port calls to Tenerife during the course of the year. Carnival Corporation expects to bring more than 300,000 passenger visits to the port in 2018 – half of all cruise passenger visits – with 130 calls by 31 different ships from the company’s cruise line brands.

“Carnival Corporation has long been a valued partner with the Port of Santa Cruz de Tenerife and the Canary Islands, and we are confident that they will be a wonderful steward of our recently built cruise port,” said Pedro Suárez López de Vergara, president of the Port Authority of Santa Cruz de Tenerife. “Thanks in large part to Carnival Corporationships, the cruise market generated an economic impact to the Port of Santa Cruz de Tenerife and the city of Santa Cruz of €24 million ($27.1 million) in the 2018 cruise season, an increase of €6m from the 2017 cruise season, and we look forward to continuing to share our beautiful island with visiting cruise passengers coming through this cruise terminal.”

The Port Authority of Santa Cruz de Tenerife celebrates this long-term agreement with the aim of extending the benefits to its other ports – Santa Cruz de La Palma, San Sebastián de La Gomera, La Estaca in El Hierro and Los Cristianos in Tenerife.

“This concession and our ongoing investment is part of Carnival Corporation’s long-term strategy to continue to develop the cruise industry in the Canary Islands,” said Giora Israel, senior vice president of global port and destination development for Carnival Corporation. “Our passion is to always provide the best possible experiences for our guests, and Tenerife is an extremely popular destination that offers something for everyone – including a storied history, beautiful beaches, exotic gardens, unique crafts and memorable cuisine. We look forward to ensuring that our cruise guests coming through the Port of Santa Cruz de Tenerife have a great experience, and we also look forward to expanding relationships with our friends in Tenerife.”

Santa Cruz Terminal joins eight global ports and terminals already operated by Carnival Corporation and its cruise line brands, including:

Barcelona (Helix & Palacruceros terminals) in Spain
Savona in Italy
Amber Cove in the Dominican Republic
Puerta Maya in Cozumel, Mexico
Grand Turk Cruise Center in the Turks and Caicos Islands
Mahogany Bay in Roatan, Honduras
Long Beach in California

Iconic QE2 finally set for debut as floating Hotel

Iconic QE2 finally set for debut as floating hotel

Image via Rocky Grimes /

The long-awaited opening of former Cunard flagship QE2 as a floating hotel in Dubai is expected next Wednesday.

Local reports point to April 18 being a soft launch date, followed by a more formal opening later in the year.

According to an updated website, QE2 has 224 refurbished rooms and suites, 13 restaurants and nightlife venues, a shopping arcade and 25 meeting rooms and conferencing facilities.

The 13-deck ship is docked permanently at Port Rashid in Dubai as the first floating hotel in the Gulf region.

Guests will enter the ship from a terminal, which has been turned into a maritime museum featuring artworks from the ship, which was sold by Cunard to Dubai government investment company Istithmar World in 2007.

The ship travelled to Dubai a year later following a farewell voyage around the UK.

QE2 Shipping and PCFC Hotels are both wholly-owned subsidiaries of the Government of Dubai’s Ports, Customs & Free Zone Corporation.

PCFC Hotels, with investment in the hospitality, retail, real estate and technology sectors, is the operator of the QE2.

The website says: “Docked permanently at Dubai’s Mina Rashid, she has been lovingly restored to her former glory – revitalized with all the latest in smart technology.

“Step aboard and relax in her comfortable rooms and suites that offer an imposing backdrop of Dubai’s iconic skyline or the ocean beyond.

“Embark on a culinary journey across her 13 restaurants, bars and entertainment venues. Immerse yourself in her rich past at the onsite QE2 Exhibition.

“We’ve curated a seamless and unforgettable journey that blends old-world sophistication with a new level in hospitality.”

The race to build the world’s biggest cruise ship is over

Image result for symphony of the seas

Royal Caribbean’s Symphony of the Seas
Can we call it now?
The race to build the biggest cruise ship ever is over, I think.
And the winner is Royal Caribbean International.
Will anyone ever build a cruise ship bigger than Royal’s Oasis-class ships, the fourth of which was delivered last week? It might happen, but the evidence suggests that it won’t. The reason why I think not is that many cruise companies, including Royal itself, have had a chance to design something bigger since the Oasis of the Seas first took to the oceans in 2009.
No one has.
Of the 36 cruise ships over 120,000 gross tons delivered since 2009, none are bigger than the 228,081-ton Symphony of the Seas, which is on its way from the shipyard in France to Barcelona, Spain, where it will begin seven-day cruises on April 7.
Of the 43 cruise ships over 120,000 gross tons on order or about to be delivered, none are bigger than the Symphony.
Those orders include ships for nearly every major cruise operator besides Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd., including Carnival Corp., Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings, Walt Disney Co., MSC Cruises and Genting Hong Kong.
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MSC Seaside.
Each had an opportunity to design the new biggest cruise ship in the world. The closest will be Dream Cruises, which is building a pair of 204,000 gross ton Global class ships for delivery in 2020 and 2021.
Royal Caribbean also has had two chances to top itself but has designed the smaller Quantum class at 168,666 gross tons and the upcoming Icon class at 200,000 gross tons. Royal is still cranking out Oasis-class ships the next is due in 2021. So perhaps when it is finished with that class, it will design something bigger.
For decades, the biggest cruise ship in the world was the 70,327 gross ton Queen Elizabeth 2, which reigned for 21 years from 1967 to 1988 when the 73,192 gross ton Sovereign of the Seas de-throned it.
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RMS Queen Elizabeth 2nd
Thereafter, in the 20 years from 1988 to 2009, a series of newbuilds followed that each topped the last in size. Now there has been a nine-year lull. To match the QE2’s longevity as No. 1, the Symphony of the Seas would have to be the biggest until 2039.
Maybe that won’t happen. There’s always economies of scale to be reaped by building bigger, although the evidence seems to suggest that beyond 5,500 passengers, operators reach a point of diminishing returns.
But for now, long live the Symphony of the Seas.