Tuesday, 9th July 2013
Visit of P&O Arcadia a Landmark in Development of Dún Laoghaire as Cruise Centre
Today (Tuesday, 9th July) marks another significant landmark in the development of Dún Laoghaire Harbour as a location for visits by cruise ships, with the arrival early this morning of the Arcadia, a mid-size vessel of the famous P&O line.
Around 2,388 passengers have arrived in Dún Laoghaire by tender boat today. Dún Laoghaire is the first port of call since the Arcadia left Southampton on Sunday. The exclusively adult cruise will leave Dún Laoghaire this evening at 6pm and sail north to the Icelandic capital Reykjavik. The 16-deck ship has 82,500 gross tonnes, is 290 metres long and 32 wide and is able to travel at a maximum speed of 24 knots.
Speaking after the arrival of the Arcadia this morning, the CEO of Dún Laoghaire Harbour Company, Gerry Dunne, said: “This is an important 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 Arcadia shows the potential of this sector of tourism to deliver significant economic benefit to Dún Laoghaire, the Greater Dublin area and the country in general”.
A further seven cruise vessels are expected to visit Dún Laoghaire Harbour over the next two months including a luxury, masted sailing ship, The Wind Star later this month.
Contact: Ciara Murphy, DHR Communications at Ciara@dhr.ie / 087-9626231.