Dubai Cruise Terminal is set for expansion just ten years after it was launched as the sector continues to develop.
The property – based at Port Rashid – can presently handle up to 7,000 passengers simultaneously, carried on three separate vessels.
However, following the renovations, the terminal will be able to accommodate five vessels at once, with a welcome offered to 8,000 passengers.
“Dubai is the ideal hub for cruise liners to do their operations mainly because of our strategic location,” said Hamad M. Bin Mejren, executive director at the Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing in Dubai.
“We have one of the best airports with a capacity of over 60 million passengers; we have over 130 airlines serving the airports with direct access to over 200 cities all over the world.
“The port is very convenient for cruise operations because it is located right in the city.”
Last year Dubai Cruise Terminal handled 390,000 passengers, with visitor numbers expected to rise to 625,000 by 2015.
TUI Cruises, a joint venture between TUI and Royal Caribbean Cruises, recently became the latest cruise line to offer services in the Gulf from Dubai.
“In comparison to the rest of the Arabian Gulf, Dubai has the most experience in handling cruise ships, which is why we’ve chosen Dubai as a location,” said Richard J. Vogel, CEO of TUI Cruises.
Costa Cruises and Royal Caribbean International also call at the port.