Officially named the Marina Bay Cruise Centre Singapore (MBCCS), Singapore’s cruise tourism marks another significant milestone, with the completion of its International Cruise Terminal.
Mr S Iswaran, Minister in the Prime Minister’s Office and Second Minister for Home Affairs and Trade & Industry, announced the name of the cruise centre after a site inspection of the completed terminal. Minister Iswaran toured the 28,000-square meter MBCCS and was briefed on its processes and facilities.
“The MBCCS is a key infrastructure piece of our tourism landscape. Singapore’s cruise passenger arrival has been rising steadily at an annual compounded growth rate of 3.6% over the last 10 years, reaching about one million passengers in 2011. With MBCCS, more cruise ships will be able to homeport and call on Singapore and Asia. We look forward to welcoming more and bigger cruise ships. Singapore will continue to work with regional governments to develop new cruising itineraries and attract more cruise lines to deploy to this region,” said Minister Iswaran.
The MBCCS can handle 6,800 passengers at any one time. It effectively doubles Singapore’s berth capacity and allows Singapore to cater to the world’s largest cruise ships. The MBCCS will catalyze the growth of the cruise industry in Singapore and will help realize Singapore’s potential as a gateway to cruising in Southeast Asia and beyond.
Singapore can expect new and varied product offerings for cruise passengers. Celebrity Millenniums, operated by Celebrity Cruises, will homeport out of Singapore for the first time later this year and are expected to make 10 ship calls during the 2012/2013 season. This will be the first time that Celebrity Cruises is homeporting a ship out of Singapore. Costa Cruises will also be deploying a second ship, Costa Atlantica, to join Costa Victoria in Singapore from May 2013. Other cruise lines like Holland American Line’s Zaandam and Seabourn Cruises’ Seabourn Quest are also making maiden calls to Singapore. This year alone, Singapore expects 9 maiden calls in total, which is almost double the number of new sailings in 2011.
“The strategic location of MBCCS in Singapore’s new downtown Marina Bay adds to the area’s myriad appeal that features a necklace of attractions and exciting events. MBCCS could not have been realized without the combined efforts of our government partners MTI, MHA, ICA, MPA and JTC, and our appointed terminal operator SATS-Creuers. We would like to sincerely thank them for helping to make MBCCS a reality,” remarked Ms Aw Kah Peng, Chief Executive of Singapore Tourism Board.
The official opening ceremony of MBCCS is slated for late 2012.