St Maarten’s cruise comeback took another big step this week with its first six-ship day of the season.
Indeed, it was the first time six ships had called on St Maarten in a single day since the onset of the pandemic.
Wednesday saw a total of six ships and more than 7,500 passengers and crew disembarking at Port St Maarten, a major sign of progress for the island’s cruising renaissance.
“It’s with great esteem that we welcome our guests and crew with a warm St. Maarten welcome,” said St Maarten Tourism Minister Roger Lawrence. “After 19 months we are able to accommodate six vessels to our piers.”
The ships included Sky Princess from Princess Cruises; AIDAluna; AIDA Diva; Marella Cruises’ Marella Discovery; and Royal Caribbean’s Explorer of the Seas and Jewel of the Seas cruise ships.
“This is a great indication of the direction we are heading. To return and maintain our status as a leading destination we must continue to collaborate with our partners and offer service excellence,” Lawrence said.
The ships were also far fuller than they had been since the return of cruising last year.
According to Alexander Gumbs, CEO of Port St Maarten Group, the ships in port on Wednesday were operating above 50 percent occupancy – up from around 30 percent when the season began.