Cruising has returned to Antigua and Barbuda.
The first cruise ship to return to the destination was Windstar Cruises’ Sea Breeze, which called on St John’s this week.
The ship was welcomed with a water cannon salute in St John’s harbor, the booming of tugboat horns and steel pan performances by the Hells Gate Steel Orchestra.
“Today is truly an exciting day for Antigua and Barbuda’s cruise industry. It is one that we have been working hard towards with our Health Authorities and International Cruise lines to ensure that we restart in a safe and sustainable manner to the benefit of all stakeholders,” said Minister of Tourism Charles Fernandez. “It’s also one that has been looked forward to with anticipation by the scores of businesses and hundreds of our countrymen who depend on this industry for their livelihoods.”
The return comes as the island has mounted a successful vaccination program, with 37,000 people in Antigua’s adult population vaccinated, and cases at an all-time low.
“Nothing could have given me greater joy today than the sight of the Star Breeze pulling into the port! We are absolutely thrilled to welcome this fabulous yacht-style cruise ship and its passengers and crew to Antigua and Brbuda,” said Dona Regis-Prosper, General Manager of Antigua Cruise Port. “In recent weeks, we have been in many discussions with the Windstar Cruises team and the government to determine how to make this trip, and voyages to come, as safe and successful as possible for everyone involved.”
All crew and passengers on Star Breeze are fully vaccinated.
More than 60 passengers disembarked from the boutique ship to enjoy the destination.