Cruise: Canaveral, Cozumel
Port Canaveral has been named "Best North American Homeport" in this year’s Cruise Critic U.S. Editors’ Picks Awards.
The citation notes: "Previously overshadowed by other Florida ports, Port Canaveral is one of the most up-and-coming cruise hubs in North America. Split into two areas, the facility has seven ship berths, with plans for three more. You'll find beaches, a campground, oceanfront dining, and a new Exploration Tower."
At Port Canaveral, renovation of Cruise Terminals 5 and Cruise Terminal 10 are under way following the opening of the new $110 million Cruise Terminal 1 late last year. Next year, the Carnival Magic, Norwegian Epic, and Royal Caribbean’s Oasis of the Seas mega-ships start calling Port Canaveral home, bringing the number of homeported ships to 10.
Port Canaveral is expected to grow by 50 percent in the next three or four years as it goes from serving 4.2 million cruise passengers annually to 6 million passengers. A recent consultant's report predicts that Port Canaveral will need three additional terminals by 2040.
"We continually focus on customer service and meeting the needs of our cruise partners and their guests as a top priority," said Robert ‘Bobby G’ Giangrisostomi, the port authority’s senior director of cruise business development. "Port Canaveral follows Mr. Walt Disney’s philosophy of ‘do what you do so well that they will want to see it again and bring their friends.’ This recognition shows we are accomplishing our goal."
Aerial perspective of Port Canaveral’s cruise terminal assets.
Photo/Canaveral Port Authority
Cozumel: Carnival Corporation Adds Third Berth to Pier at Mexico’s Highest Passenger Volume Cruise Port
Carnival Corporation & plc on October 8 officially completed construction of a third berth at its Puerta Maya pier in Cozumel, Mexico’s top cruise port by passenger volume.
With an investment of more than $20 million, the all-new "arm" was added to the company's existing pier to allow three ships to be moored at the terminal at the same time. To mark the occasion, Carnival Breeze, Carnival Freedom and Carnival Triumph – arrived the same day and became the first trio of ships to use the three-berth pier. The pier will accommodate any ship across Carnival Corporation's 10 brands, including its next-generation ships.
With 3.3 million cruise guests annually, Cozumel is the busiest cruise destination in the Caribbean, the world's largest global cruise market. In 2014, about 1.5 million Carnival Corporation guests visited Puerta Maya on 25 different ships originating from eight homeports and two countries across six of the company's brands. The expanded pier will allow more ships and their passengers to visit Cozumel.
"Cozumel is the Caribbean's most visited cruise ship destination and consistently receives high ratings from our guests," said Giora Israel, senior vice president of global port and destination development for Carnival Corporation. "So the destination is in demand by our guests, and we are excited about officially opening the third berth to our pier, since it gives our brands greater flexibility for visiting Cozumel and more of our guests the opportunity to enjoy the island."
The existing two-berth pier re-opened in October 2008, following a $50 million reconstruction to repair the damage caused by Hurricane Wilma in 2005 which included destruction of the original pier. The rebuilt two-berth pier and the all-new arm providing a third berth at the pier are designed to withstand a threshold category 5 hurricane.
The Puerta Maya pier and welcome cruise center is located on the southwestern part of Cozumel, approximately five miles south of San Miguel, the island's largest city. The cruise center houses more than 50 different outlets offering apparel, jewelry, artwork and other merchandise. The facility also features 15 stand-alone carts where local merchants market handmade crafts, costume jewelry and souvenirs.
Puerta Maya is one of three cruise terminals in Cozumel is owned by Carnival Corporation. Carnival Corporation operates five additional ports, including the newly opened Amber Cove in Dominican Republic; Palacruceros in Barcelona, Spain; Grand Turk Cruise Center in Turks and Caicos Islands; Mahogany Bay in Roatán, Honduras; and Long Beach in California. The company also operates two private island destinations in the Caribbean, Princess Cays and Half Moon Cay. In total, Carnival Corporation cruise ships visit more than 725 ports of call around the world.
The Carnival Corporation brands are AIDA Cruises, Carnival Cruise Line, Costa Cruises, Cunard, Fathom, Holland America Line, P&O Cruises (UK), P&O Cruises (Australia), Princess Cruises, and Seabourn.