The Princess Cruise Line vessel ‘Emerald Princess’ docked at the Reynolds Pier in Ocho Rios on Wednesday (May 12) with 3,147 passengers on board, on its first visit to the island.
Officials from the Jamaica Tourist Board (JTB), Member of Parliament (MP) for Northeast St. Ann, Shahine Robinson, and representatives of Lannaman and Morris Shipping Company and the St. Ann business community, were on hand to greet the vessel.
At a reception held on board the Emerald Princess, gifts of artwork and souvenir items were presented to ship caption Marco Fortezze, who in turn, handed out plaques on behalf of the crew.
Captain of the Emerald Princess, Marco Fortezze makes a presentation to President of the St. Ann Chamber of Commerce, Norma Walters on board the vessel, which docked at the Reynolds Pier in Ocho Rios on Wednesday (May 12). The vessel bought more than 3,000 passengers on its first call to the island.
The captain said he was happy to be in Jamaica and Ocho Rios in particular.
“This is not my first time here. I’ve been here many times and my last call here was about three or four years ago on one of the other Princess vessels, so I feel at home because I know your hospitality here in Jamaica, especially Ocho Rios, and I know that you are a very friendly people and always happy to see us,” he stated.
Mrs. Robinson, for her part, thanked Captain Fortezze and his crew for “making it Jamaica”.
With a planned schedule to call at the Ocho Rios port every two weeks, the MP said the visits will boost tourism figures.
The Princess Cruise Line vessel ‘Emerald Princess’, which docked at the Reynolds Pier in Ocho Rios on Wednesday (May 12) with 3,147 passengers on board.
“As we think of the new economic realities that face us globally, we are indeed heartened that you have chosen Ocho Rios as a port of call. We know that this decision to come here will be beneficial to your passengers and your company and of course, the people of Ocho Rios and by extension, the people of Jamaica,” she said.
Jamaica was the ship’s second port of call on a seven-day western Caribbean cruise.
The vessel next docks in Grand Cayman, then on to Cozumel Island in Mexico before stopping in Fort Lauderdale, Florida “where some of the passengers will disembark and we will take on new passengers and then we will set sail for our east Caribbean seven day cruise,” Caption Fortezze told JIS News.
The Emerald Princess was built in 2007 and has a capacity for 3,080 guests and 1,200 crew members.
Among its many amenities are: three dining rooms, two specialty restaurants, as well as a wide variety of bars and lounges, five fresh-water pools, gym and fitness area, nine-hole putting course, a jogging track, casino and theatre.