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Cruise boost - Mega liner makes first stop in Falmouth

Published:Saturday | December 5, 2015 | 11:12 AMMark Titus
Jason Hall, Jamaica Tourist Board, deputy director of tourism (left), presents a plaque to Norwegian captain, Anders Ingebrigtsen.
Dean Bailey is the hotel director for the MS Anthem of the Seas. His father is Jamaican, from Linstead, St Catherine. Bailey says he has been coming to Jamaica since the 1970s. He supervises 1,400 of the 1,600 crew members and reports to the captain.

Jamaica's tourism industry received a fillip last Friday as the Royal Caribbean International's (RCI's) newest vessel, MS Anthem of the Seas, made its inaugural call at the Historic Falmouth port.

MS Anthem of the Seas is the second ship of the Quantum class, the second-largest class of passenger ships, behind RCI's Oasis class ships, and was christened on April 20, 2015.

The mega vessel has 16 passenger-accessible decks and the capacity for 4,905 guests and a crew complement of 1,600.

It has 2,090 staterooms: 1,570 balcony staterooms, 147 ocean-view staterooms, and 1,373 inside staterooms. Of those staterooms, 34 are wheelchair accessible and 28 are studio staterooms for single travellers.

Falmouth among the best

Speaking at the plaque-exchange ceremony during the inaugural call, Norwegian captain, Anders Ingebrigtsen, who has made several visits to Jamaica but who was making his first stop at Falmouth, described the Historic Falmouth Pier as one of the best he has seen around the world.

Jason Hall, Jamaica Tourist Board deputy director of tourism told Ingebrigtsen that the visit of his vessel was very important to the people of Jamaica.

"We certainly value these opportunities to host your crew and valued passengers and will ensure that your visits will always be memorable experiences," said Hall.

Expressing his joy at the mega ship's visit, Delroy Christie, president of the Trelawny Chamber of Commerce, said every new vessel that adds Falmouth to its itinerary means more commerce for his members and the opportunity for each passenger to take back a piece of Jamaica with him.

According to the website iCruise.com, Anthem of the Seas will be offering several Bahamian-themed packages throughout December and will return to Jamaica in January, March, and October of 2016.