In Grand Turk, the capital of the Turks & Caicos Islands, the Grand Turk Cruise Center (GTCC) reported a record year during the 2010 cruise season, recording a total of 248 calls from 40 cruise ships of 14 different cruise brands. In addition, its number of passengers also set a record at 622,720, a 19 percent increase over the previous year and a 113 percent increase compared to 2006, when it first opened.
Located on 14 acres in the Caribbean, the GTCC is a destination in and of itself, featuring a shopping center, water facilities and Jimmy Buffett's "Margaritaville" restaurant, alongside its access to sprawling beaches and prime location, 30 miles away from Miami, Florida. To date, the center's shopping district measures 45,000 square feet, including luxury jewelry stores, boutiques and specialty stores, as well as local craft stands and souvenir kiosks. Last year, the GTCC worked with NASA's Kennedy Space Center to develop a 3,500-square-foot attraction. The center's interactive exhibits and authentic spacecraft replicas recognize the relationship of the American spaceflight mission and its importance to Grand Turk's history.