Port Royal to receive largest cruise ship

November 26, 2021
Tourists tour Fort Charles in Port Royal after arriving on a cruise ship, Marella Discovery, in January 2020.
Tourists tour Fort Charles in Port Royal after arriving on a cruise ship, Marella Discovery, in January 2020.

The historic Naval Dockyard at Port Royal is set to receive its largest cruise ship, to date, next Thursday.

The Nieuw Statendam, one of the newest vessels from luxury cruise line Holland America, is scheduled to call at Jamaica's newest cruise port.

The historic docking is part of the Port Authority of Jamaica's (PAJ) intensified restart to cruise shipping activities after a 17-month absence due to COVID-19. The vessel, which can accommodate approximately 3,000 passengers, will be at between 50 and 60 per cent of capacity.

Kimberley Stiff, assistant vice president, marketing and communications at PAJ, said the call by Holland America will demonstrate to the global cruise market Port Royal's ability to facilitate larger vessels.

"It will also provide an opportunity for Port Royal, and by extension Kingston, to showcase its sought-after heritage, culture, entertainment, and other unique offerings that distinguish its cruise passenger experience from any other," Stiff said.

Prime Minister Andrew Holness has described Port Royal as a valuable historical asset. He said that the Government is committed to ensuring that the area is developed and maintained for the benefit of Jamaicans.

"Port Royal is a historical gem for Jamaicans, and we can't have such an asset just sitting idly by," the prime minister said.

Works are being undertaken to transform the historic town into a thriving centre for tourism, and includes restoration of Fort Charles and Giddy House, building a museum, and constructing attractions to complement the Port Royal cruise pier, which welcomed its first cruise ship in January 2020.

There are plans to improve the housing stock, water system, roadways, and drainage network.

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