St. Kitts is slowly but surely ensuring the local economy is getting a significant boost. A few weeks ago, Cruise Hive reported the port having visits from three ships in one day; today, December 7, that milestone will be topped by the visit of four ships in a single day. The day is even more remarkable because three of those ships are from Celebrity Cruises, and one from German operator AIDA.
The reunion of Celebrity ships in St. Kitts shows how the cruise industry is rebounding after a disastrous year. It’s also good news for the inhabitants of St. Kitts, an island that has traditionally relied mainly on income from cruise ships that visit the island.
St. Kitts Reaping the Benefits of a Clear Policy
The Caribbean cruise season is ramping up to full speed, and St Kitts is taking full advantage of the situation. The island’s government did not open the island to tourism until it had clear agreements with all cruise operators.
Also, only licensed taxi/tour operators, attraction tour guides, seaport officials, and cruise-related personnel interact with passengers. The island is now capable of safely operating at total capacity.
No less than four cruise ships visit Port Zante, Basseterre, the island’s capital city, on December 7. This includes three vessels from Celebrity Cruises; Celebrity Equinox, Celebrity Constellation, the new Celebrity Apex, and one vessel from German operator AIDA, the AIDAluna.
During November, St. Kitts already enjoyed a steady stream of cruise ships traffic. 28 Cruise ship calls were recorded in November, bringing 41,000 visitors to Basseterre. Although this is down from earlier estimates of 70,000 visitors for last month, they are still significant numbers.
Also Read: Things to Do in St. Kitts While on a Cruise
For December, Port Zanta expects to welcome 60 ships from various cruise lines such as Seabourn, Royal Caribbean, AIDA, MSC, Celebrity Cruises, Viking, and many more. It will also not be the only time this many ships visit on the same day; on December 13 and December 30, the port will be fully booked again.
The docks at Port Zante will be a sight to behold today, December 7, as no less than three Celebrity Cruise ships will be docked at the port on the same day. Celebrity Equinox, Celebrity Constellation, and the new Apex visit the island regularly.
St Kitts is popular with Celebrity ships anyway as Celebrity Silhouette and Celebrity Millenium also have regular calls in Port Zante. The cruise line has been one of the success stories of the restart of operations and is currently sailing with eight ships in the Caribbean area.
The three ships docked in St Kitts today all have different itineraries. The 121,878 gross ton, 2850-passenger Celebrity Equinox sails out of Fort Lauderdale, Florida, on a series of Caribbean Cruises that take the vessel to all corners, including Barbados Cozumel, Aruba, St. Kitts, Antigua, and many more ports.
Celebrity Constellation finds its homeport in Tampa, Florida. The 90,940 gross tonnes Millennium-class cruise ship sails a series of cruises to the Dutch Caribbean and the Eastern Caribbean.
Finally, the newest ship in the Celebrity Cruises fleet, Celebrity Apex, sails a wide variety of Mexico and Caribbean cruises out of Fort Lauderdale. She visited St. Kitts for the first time on her maiden Caribbean voyage on November 10. The 129,500 gross tonnes cruise ship has space for nearly 3000 passengers.
Apex is the second of five EDGE-class ships. The others include sister ships Celebrity Edge launched in 2018, Celebrity Beyond which will launch in 2022; Celebrity Ascent, scheduled for launch in 2023; and the final Edge-class vessel, which is currently unnamed, will launch in 2025.