This week in the cruise industry has seen a number of important shoreside updates in the Caribbean.
MSC Cruises announced that its new private island destination in the Bahamas, Ocean Cay MSC Marine Reserve, will now open December 5, 2019. Previously, the destination had been slated to receive guests in mid-November, but the impact of Hurricane Dorian and further foul weather slowed down preparations. All MSC ships that had been scheduled to call at the island before December 5 will be rerouted to alternative Caribbean destinations or will add a sea day to their schedule, and guests will be compensated for the missed call.
Also in the Bahamas, this week Grand Bahama Island tourism officials reported that the destination is on the rebound from Hurricane Dorian. In addition to the recent or impending reopening of hotels and attractions, the island’s cruise sector has seen resumed calls by Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line’s Grand Celebration and ships from Carnival Cruise Line. Also this week, Carnival Corporation announced a new agreement to fund and support repairs to Rand Memorial Hospital, the primary hospital of Freeport on Grand Bahama island.
Finally, St. Kitts opened a new pier with the capability to host large cruise ships. The new pier, which is in Port Zante, will allow the port to host up to three of the largest cruise ships in the world, officials said.