Dubai reaffirms its position as an international cruise tourism hub

Senior officials at the christening ceremony for the region’s largest cruise ship.

Sheikh Mansoor Bin Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, chairman of the Dubai Council for Border Crossing Points Security, attended one of the region’s largest cruise ship christening ceremonies, at an event that reflects the global profile growing Dubai cruise industry. Hollywood superstar Sophia Loren has officially named MSC Virtuosa, the new luxury liner launched by MSC Cruises in a scintillating ceremony held in Port Rashid.

In partnership with DP World and the Dubai Department of Economics and Tourism, MSC Cruises, the third largest cruise operator in the world and part of the Cruise division of the MSC Group, has chosen Dubai for the christening ceremony in recognition of the Group’s commitment to Dubai and the United Arab Emirates, as well as the wider Middle East market where MSC Cruises is the brand leader. This landmark event reflects Dubai’s emergence as a must-see destination for cruise vacationers around the world and reinforces the importance of the cruise industry’s contribution to the growth of Dubai’s tourism industry.

Sheikh Mansoor Bin Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum said: “Dubai’s glorious maritime heritage, which is an integral part of its cultural heritage, has inspired its development as a major global maritime destination. The emirate’s status as a leading international maritime hub has significantly strengthened its position as a pivotal global center for trade and tourism.

Further, His Highness noted that “Dubai’s renewed growth as an international cruise tourism hub, overcoming the repercussions of global challenges in the industry, testifies to the leadership’s vision to create an infrastructure that surpasses the best in the world. The accelerated rebound in its cruise industry also reflects Dubai’s ability to adapt quickly and flexibly to changing global conditions and to take advantage of new opportunities emerging in a changing environment.

A long-standing maritime tradition, the official christening ceremony of MSC Virtuosa took place in the presence of the ship’s captain, Captain Francisco Veniero. The event was conducted in accordance with all public health and safety protocols established by the Government of Dubai, backed by MSC Cruises’ state-of-the-art health and safety protocol which allowed ships on the line to restart their operations. operations in 2020. The special occasion is also part of the celebrations. surrounding the UAE’s Golden Jubilee and coincides with Dubai’s hosting of Expo 2020 Dubai.

Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem, Group Chairman and CEO of DP World, said: “It is a proud moment for us to host the christening ceremony of MSC Virtuosa to Mina Rashid, who has constantly reaffirmed her status as a destination of foreground, regionally and globally. The port’s state-of-the-art facilities, passenger handling capacity and strategic location have helped us win several important accolades, most recently being the Middle East’s First Cruise Port Award at the 2021 World Travel Awards, received for the 14th year. consecutive. To ensure that the port continues to be an integral contributor to the UAE economy and an important economic pillar of Dubai, we are working to improve its capabilities. Our sole aim is to strengthen its status as a prime recreational facility which represents Dubai’s rich cultural heritage. Through our efforts, we will strive to ensure that the Emirate continues to be recognized globally as a world-class cruise destination. We are also expecting a total of 126 ship calls and over 500,000 cruise passengers for the upcoming 2021/22 cruise season. This will further boost Dubai’s tourism figures and boost our progress.

Helal Saeed Almarri, Director General of Dubai Economy and Tourism Department, said: “Inspired by the vision of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President of the United Arab Emirates and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, to make the most favorite city, revisited and visited destination, Dubai continues to lead the way as one of the world’s leading tourist destinations and the cruise capital of the Middle East.

Hosting the christening ceremony for MSC Cruises’ new ship is a testament to the city’s popularity as a must-see destination and gateway for cruises to the region. Dubai’s reputation as a global cruise hub continues to grow in stature and milestones such as these reflect the crucial contribution of cruising to the city’s tourism industry. Dubai is also committed to ensuring that every visitor arriving by land, air or sea has an unforgettable experience and the desire to come back to Dubai time and time again to explore, experience and enjoy our diverse range of destinations. We remain grateful to MSC Cruises and our stakeholders and partners such as DP World for their continued support, which has helped revive cruise tourism in the region. As Dubai continues to welcome international tourists, this event will build on the momentum generated by the new cruise season, further fueling growth during this historic year for Dubai with Expo 2020 and the Golden Jubilee. gold from the United Arab Emirates, and beyond. “


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