Carnival Corporation’s Caribbean expansion is on the brink of completion, with Amber Cover Port expected to welcome its first cruise ships in early October. The US$85 million Dominican Republic cruise hub is part of the corporation’s plans to augment its presence in the world’s favourite cruising region. Given the fact that Carnival Corporation is the largest travel and leisure company on the planet it comes as no surprise that it’s invested such a huge sum of cash into creating a purpose built leisure port that six of its nine brands will enjoy.
“There are several markets that are becoming increasingly important to the cruise industry, but today the Caribbean is the single largest share of our business,” says Giora Israel, senior vice president of global port and destination development for Carnival Corporation.
The port is located on the island’s idyllic north coast, close to the city of Puerto Plata. Travel + Leisure magazine recently crowned it as one of the “Best Places to Travel in 2015” which is quite a feat! When stepping ashore passengers will enjoy a modern waterfront welcome centre, accompanied by a beachside boardwalk, recreational area and transportation hub designed to ferry holidaymakers to the port’s surrounding attractions, destinations and shore excursion start points. Does Amber Cover Port look familiar? Perhaps that’s because it was used as a filming location for the original Jurassic Park movie. As far as we’re concerned, this makes it a silver screen worthy destination!
A commitment to creating fresh new experiences
Carnival Corporation maintains that as well as offering new cruisers exciting experiences, the Amber Cove Port development is also part of its commitment to offering long-term cruise veterans fresh new destinations to explore and enjoy.
“We are constantly looking for new ways for our guests to enjoy their cruise experience, and it is always exciting to add new destinations to our itineraries, especially in the Caribbean where many of our passengers have been before,” says Israel. “We are confident that our guests will love visiting Amber Cove, which we believe will quickly become a very popular port of call for our guests. And because Amber Cove is easily accessible, it will give our guests a convenient gateway to the Puerto Plata region, which is spectacular. And importantly, Amber Cove will allow us to offer our guests a new option in our Caribbean itineraries.”
Cruise lines with their sights on Amber Cover Port
The multi-million dollar development is owned and operated by Carnival Corporation which means that a myriad of our favourite lines will soon start to add Amber Cover Port to their itineraries. Carnival Cruise Line, Cunard, Holland America Line and P&O Cruises will all start treating passengers to Amber Cove Port day trips later this year. The port will feature dual berths capable of hosting up to two ships at a time. When it finally opens its gates later this year an estimated 250,000 cruise passengers are expected to stream through within 12 months.
Carnival Victory will make the inaugural visit on October 6, followed by calls from Cunard’s Queen Mary 2 on November 22, P&O Cruises’ Azura on December 5 and Holland America Line’s ms Eurodam on January 19 2016. All up there will be a total of 57 calls by 13 different ships between October 2015 and April 2016.
Amped up tourism for the Dominican Republic
For the Dominican Republic, Amber Cove Port is the largest cruise industry investment ever made in the Caribbean nation. It reflects its potential as one of the world’s most promising up and coming cruise destinations, as well as the industry’s confidence that the Caribbean will remain the world’s favourite cruise region. For the local population it will create around 430 jobs, with Francisco Javier Garcia, tourism director of the Dominican Republic explaining “The construction of the cruise port at Amber Cove has been an incredible project for our entire country, as well as the Caribbean region as a whole.” He praises the port for its benefits to the local economy and anticipates “the investment to have a positive long-lasting economic impact.” Not to mention the fact that it’s opened up the Amber Coast to cruise passengers, an opportunity that hasn’t been available for almost 30 years.
Supercharged shore excursions
When docked in Amber Cove Port passengers will be able to take advantage of one of the Caribbean’s most exciting shore excursion programme. They’ll be able to choose from around 40 unique experiences, from island hopping and deep sea fishing to adventure expeditions and culinary flights.
Images sourced via Flickr Creative Commons iStockPhoto.biz and Carnival Cruises Media Centre. Credits: 16:9clue, Brook Ward, Steve Jurvetson, iStockPhoto and Carnival Cruises.