The first edition of the Route des Princes, a new European Tour for racing multihulls will kick off on Sunday, 9th June from Valencia in Spain to the Bay of Morlaix in France via Lisbon, Dún Laoghaire and Plymouth. The nine multihulls led by the flagship new Maxi 80 multihull Prince de Bretagne will arrive in Dún Laoghaire on Thursday, 20th or Friday, 21st of June depending on weather conditions.
The race seeks to mix exciting competition on the water with engaging activities ashore with a festival taking place in Dún Laoghaire from Friday, 21st June to Sunday, 23rd of June. Festivities start with a concert at the Band Stand on the East Pier at 5pm on Friday along with food courts and children’s amusements. On Saturday and Sunday, the multihulls will race in the bay from 2pm to 5pm with live commentary from Irish Olympic sailor Ger Owens. Bands performing over the weekend include: CRASH, Dirty Epics, Tig Linn, The Army Band, The Shoos, Jupe and Robert Delaney.
Speaking ahead of the event, Gerry Dunne, CEO of Dún Laoghaire Harbour Company said, “This year’s Route des Princes festival on the famous east pier is being hosted by the Dún Laoghaire Harbour Company in association with the National Yacht Club and Dún Laoghaire Rathdown County Council. It promises to be a great weekend with high quality sailing and a wide breadth of entertainment, from live music to face painting, amusements for kids to a great selection of food and much more. The event will be a great experience for the whole family. The Masterplan for the Harbour fully recognises the importance of increasing public participation in all the leisure activities within the harbour.”
Earlier today, Route des Princes organisers announced the fleet would make a bid for the Round Ireland Speed record during their time in Irish waters. Irish interest will be in the MOD70 Musandam Oman-Air where Irish offshore sailor Damian Foxall will be part of the crew. Damian is one of the world’s leading offshore sailors and has sailed around the world a remarkable nine times and has won both the Barcelona World Race and the Volvo Ocean Race.
The Routes des Princes is a unique race, highlighting the town and the region’s food and culture at each stopover. The multihulls competing in the Route des Princes will dock in Valencia, Lisbon, Dún Laoghaire, Plymouth and Roscoff. For more information, please visit: http://www.routedesprinces.fr/en/.
Today (Thursday, May 16th) marks a significant milestone in the development of Dún Laoghaire Harbour as a location for visits by cruise ships, with the arrival this morning of the Queen Mary II, flagship vessel of the famous Cunard line.
Around 3,000 passengers and 1,000 crew were on the vessel that arrived at 7.00am and will remain moored off the harbour until around 6.00pm this evening. Six further cruise vessels are expected to visit Dún Laoghaire Harbour over the next two months with a total of 14 expected over the full season.
Speaking after the arrival of the Queen Mary II this morning, the CEO of Dún Laoghaire Harbour Company, Gerry Dunne, said: “This is an historic day for Dún Laoghaire Harbour and augurs well for our plans to develop the harbour as the key port along the east coast for cruise visits.”
“The cruise line business is a growing market sector in the tourism industry. Ireland has recently begun to capitalise on this market and over the last few years has succeeded in attracting a growing number of visits by cruise liners. However, the number of trips to Ireland represents a very small share of this potential market and the opportunity exists to grow this business to the Irish economy very significantly.”
“Working with the Dún Laoghaire Cruise Stakeholder Group the Harbour Company has engaged in a vigorous marketing campaign, particularly in the United States, to enable Dún Laoghaire to tap into this lucrative market.”
“To ensure that the harbour is also capable of catering for the ‘new generation’ of larger cruise vessels, the Stakeholder Group has initiated a Pre-Application Consultation with An Bord Pleanála under Section 37 of the Planning and Development Act, 2000 in regard to proposals for the construction of a new quay in Dún Laoghaire Harbour to cater for vessels of up to c.340m long. This is entirely consistent with the designation of Dún Laoghaire under the recently published National Ports Policy as a centre for marine related tourism and recreational activities.”
“The visit of the Queen Mary II shows the potential of this sector of tourism to deliver significant economic benefit to DúnLaoghaire, the Greater Dublin area and the country in general”.
Huge preparations underway as Dún Laoghaire gears up for mini-cruise fest to celebrate arrival of world’s largest ocean liner – the RMS Queen Mary II
- Magnificent QM2 arrives at 7am approx
- FREE Vintage bus from Dún Laoghaire to Glasthule from 10am
- Boat trips out to circle QM2 with Dublin Bay Cruises (see www.dublinbaycruises.com)
- Face painting at St. Michael’s Church from 2pm
- Street music and dancing at St. Michael’s Church from 2pm
- Special offers throughout the town
- First of 14 cruise arrivals to Dún Laoghaire this year
Major preparations are underway in Dún Laoghaire as the town gears up for a mini-cruise festival to celebrate this Thursday’s gala arrival of the largest ocean liner in the world – the RMS Queen Mary II.
The spectacular cruise ship carrying 3,000 passengers and 1,200 crew will berth in Dún Laoghaire for the first time ever at 7am this Thursday (16th May 2013).
A five star welcome will see passengers greeted by a piper and Irish dancers as they embark at the old coal harbour from 7am.
The Dún Laoghaire Cruise Stakeholders’ Group has also installed an advanced wireless facility in Dún Laoghaire so passengers, residents and visitors to the town can enjoy extensive free internet access throughout Dún Laoghaire extending as far as the cruise ship itself during their stay.
A ‘mini cruise-festival’ for both cruise and domestic visitors on the day will include family entertainment, boat trips circling the Queen Mary, face painting, a complimentary vintage bus and live music and dancing and special offers throughout the town.
A new IPhone app for visitors to Dún Laoghaire will launch this Thursday morning (16th May 2013) in time the arrival of over 4,000 cruise passengers at 7am. The ‘CityShopper’ app will offer discounts on tourist attractions, special offers in bars and restaurants and retail deals to visitors to Dún Laoghaire from this week.
Don McManus, Chairman of the Dún Laoghaire Business Association says excitement is rife among the Dún Laoghaire Business community:
“The arrival of the Queen Mary II on Thursday marks the beginning of a new era for Dún Laoghaire. The business community has been hugely supportive in funding the cruise welcome and associated publicity. We have big plans to continue with the rapid development of the lucrative cruise market in the coming years. Last year saw the arrival of just two cruise ships carrying 300 crew and passengers. Following the establishment of a Dún Laoghaire Cruise Stakeholder Group and an aggressive international marketing strategy, this year we will welcome fourteen cruise ships with over 30,000 passengers and crew!”
The initiative is supported by Dún Laoghaire Harbour Company, Dún Laoghaire Rathdown Co. Council and the Dún Laoghaire Business Association.
Dún Laoghaire Harbour will come alive on the 27th April with the Dún Laoghaire Harbour Music Festival. The Festival is supported by Dún Laoghaire Harbour Company.
The Festival will run from 2pm to 5pm on the 27th April on the Harbour Plaza in Dún Laoghaire. It is an alcohol free event with entry free to the public with all funds to cover the show generated by the support of local businesses. Speaking about the event, Lloyd Barber, festival promoter said: “We have had tremendous support from Dún Laoghaire Harbour Company, The Dún Laoghaire Small Business Association and a variety of local businesses who see this as a great platform to draw new people to Dún Laoghaire from all over Dublin which in turn will generate business for the town and its retailers whilst supporting the live music scene.”
The Festival will kick off at 2pm on the Harbour Plaza and has local star in the making, 12 year old Stina O’Neill opening the show. Speaking about the local star, Mr. Barber, said: “I first came across Stina on a wet and wild afternoon playing her heart out to a few frozen seagulls and her mum as an audience on the East Pier. She was absolutely amazing, so we exchanged numbers and here we are now. We are delighted she can open the show and can’t wait to hear her voice through a professional production.”
The next act is up is local band CRASH who will include a variety of their original material with a selection of well-known covers thrown in. CRASH have toured Ireland and the UK for the past two years with major shows lined up for 2013 finishing the year with a tour of Australia. The band is due to release its third single “FEEL” in March.
To close the show is one of Dublin’s favourite bands, The Dirty Epics who always deliver a combination of infectious songs and electric performances. Having supported One Republic, Brandon Flowers, LadyHawke and The Hoosiers the band is on a roll having toured all around Ireland, The UK, Germany, NY and LA, appeared twice at the world famous SXSW musical festival, Austin Texas. Dirty Epics 2nd studio album, ONE WAY MIRROR is due out 22/03/2013.
Any queries about the show can be directed to Lloyd Barber on 085 833 7199 or through the Facebook page.
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