Nassau Cruise Port to Build $35 Million Water Park

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Nassau Cruise Port in the Bahamas is set to embark on a new venture with a $35-million water park designed to cater to families. The new development will complement the port’s recent $330-million redevelopment and is expected to be complete in December 2025.

The new water park will be constructed on the port’s western side, in a finger-shaped greenspace near its amphitheater. Although construction is yet to begin, officials at the port note the land is clear, a building permit is already in hand, and it is awaiting approval.

Mike Maura, Nassau Cruise Port’s chief executive, confirmed the plan with the local Tribune Business news agency. “We’re looking at a pool water investment that is going to provide an experience in the downtown area at Nassau Cruise Port so people have something to do that is more recreational and family-oriented,” he said.

Nassau Cruise Port
Nassau Cruise Port (Photo Credit: Victoria Ditkovsky)

Maura sited family-friendly cruise lines such as Disney Cruise Line and Royal Caribbean International, along with the some of the Bahamas most popular attractions as an incentive behind the new water park. 

As the largest port in the Bahamas, Nassau can accommodate up to 30,000 passengers a day, with its record set in December 2023 at 29,316. Officials at the port understand the current offerings, which include shopping, dining, and bars, cannot appeal to the masses. Instead, visitors pass through the port to other Nassau destinations like Paradise Island’s Atlantis Resort, which is said to generate nearly $359 million in revenue annually.

Although Atlantis’ 141-acre Aquaventure Atlantis Water Park is free for hotel guests, day passes are offered to cruise passengers. Prices can range from $140 for children ages 4 to 12 and $255 for adults ages 13 and older.

By creating its own waterpark, the port hopes to turn the facility into a destination. “We want them to have experiences that everyone can participate in and enjoy,” Maura told the Business Tribune.

Currently, many cruise lines with family features visit their own private destinations in the Bahamas to provide water park amusement for kids, including Disney’s Castaway Cay near Abaco and its new Lookout Cay at Lighthouse Point in the Out Islands.

Read Also: $300 Million Upgraded Nassau Cruise Port Opens This Month

Royal Caribbean International is currently constructing its Royal Beach Club on Paradise Island near Atlantis, which it hopes will attract 2,700 guests per day. Also scheduled to open in 2025, the 17-acre resort will feature multiple swimming pools, a small water park for children, and ample beach space with cabanas.

Maura explained, “Nassau Cruise Port will continue to look at our product as part of the downtown destination, and we will continue to tweak and evolve to maintain best-in-class in the region.”

A Hub of Growth and Development

Nassau Cruise Port is experiencing remarkable growth in tourism as the primary gateway into The Bahamas. Beyond setting a new cruise passenger daily record, the port made news again when it accommodated seven cruise ships simultaneously in March 2024.

Passengers in Nassau, Bahamas
Passengers in Nassau, Bahamas (Photo Credit: Nassau Cruise Port)

Every major cruise line sailing in the Caribbean visits Nassau, including Norwegian Cruise Line, Silversea Cruises, Carnival Cruise Line, MSC Cruises, Virgin Voyages, and Celebrity Cruises.

The first half of 2024 has been a continuation of Nassau’s upward trend, recording nearly 2.8 million passengers by the end of June. This result is a 24 percent increase over the same period in 2023. It’s also 800,000 more cruise passengers than its pre-pandemic figures.

The new waterpark will not only contribute to an increase of visitor spending on the island but is said to create 350 jobs. It follows on the heels of the port’s recent $330-million upgrade that was completed in May 2023. That upgrade led to the new berth allowing Nassau Cruise Port to break its passenger and ship records.

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