Spanish cruise line makes Dubai debut as visitors swell

Dubai, which aims to attract 725,000 cruise tourists during the current season, has recently announced the arrival of Spain’s Pullmantur Cruise Lines in the emirate for the first time.

Dubai Tourism has welcomed cruise ship Horizon into Dubai, marking the debut of Pullmantur Cruise Lines, reaffirming the city’s position as the “cruise hub of the region”.

Horizon was one of five cruise ships to arrive in-port on the same day, bringing in a total of more than 25,000 cruise tourists to the emirate in a single day.

With Dubai as its official winter home port, Horizon is set to conduct 14 calls throughout the season, with regular itineraries around the Arabian Gulf.

During each call, the ship will dock for over 36 hours, offering both its passengers and the crew the opportunity to explore the city.

Jamal Alfalasi, director of Dubai Cruise Tourism said: “Dubai is fast becoming a favoured destination among global cruise tourists with travellers choosing to begin their experience from the emirate.

“We are delighted that Pullmantur has launched its inaugural Arabian Gulf itinerary for the 2018/2019 season and welcome their ship Horizon to Dubai, its official home port this season.

“As a popular winter cruise destination, our on-going partnership supports the promising future of the emirate’s cruise tourism industry, and we will continue to work collaboratively with our public-private sector stakeholders to position the city as the most viable gateway for both regional and international cruise itineraries, and the perfect pre-post cruise stay destination.”

Richard Vogel, Pullmantur’s president and CEO, thanked the city for its continued support in making the deployment of Horizon in Dubai during the winter season a reality.

Dubai’s cruise industry is set for a strong performance throughout the 2018/2019 season, with an anticipated 725,000 cruise tourists travelling into the emirate.

Throughout the season, seven ships from six different cruise lines will operate regular itineraries from Dubai across the Arabian Gulf and India, with over 20 world-class cruise lines stopping over in the emirate.

Earlier this year, it was announced that Dubai is working with Carnival Corporation, the US-based cruise company and the world’s largest travel leisure company, to develop the next phase of the emirate’s plan to become a global cruise tourism hub.

Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, in May approved plans to make the Dubai Cruise Terminal the main hub in the emirate, with a launch date of October 2020 slated.

Dubai Harbour will be home to two cruise terminal buildings, spanning a total of 30,000 square metres, joined by a single quay of about 1km, capable of accommodating up to three cruise ships concurrently, as well as up to 13,200 passengers at a time. Two further terminal buildings are planned that will increase capacity to six cruise ships at the same time.

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