BROOKLYN, NY – The twin-island federation’s cruise tourism resumed on Thursday with the arrival of a ship in the ultra-luxury Seabourn cruise line, the Seabourn Odyssey, which will make a port call every week until October.
“Today is indeed a wonderful day for people of St. Kitts and Nevis as we warmly welcome the luxurious Seabourn Odyssey to our shores,” Prime Minister Dr. Timothy Harris said.
“Tourism is one of the main drivers of the economy, and therefore we plan to reopen the destination for tourism and travel responsibly. We have implemented a phased approach to rebuilding the cruise sector aimed at supporting our local economy and providing our visitors with a safe and positive on-island experience.”
Seabourn is recognized as one of the world’s leading luxury cruise lines.
A symbolic ship-to-ship salute, live steelpan performances, and the drummers greeted the Seabourn Odyssey, her passengers, and crew as the ship docked at South Friars Bay.
“We are pleased to welcome the Seabourn Odyssey to St. Kitts and Nevis for the highly-anticipated restart of our cruise tourism sector,” Minister of Tourism Lindsay Grant said.
“St. Kitts is a destination that remains in high demand amongst travelers, and I want to thank our cruise line partners and our stakeholders here on the island for working so diligently with us to ensure that all the requirements were met to allow for the successful return of cruises to the Federation. This is indeed a propitious occasion as we begin rebuilding towards our preeminent cruise port position in the region.”
St. Kitts is looking forward to the number of ships increasing steadily over the summer, with arrivals from Celebrity Summit, Celebrity Equinox, Allure of the Seas, and Symphony of the Seas next month.
Currently, the minimum protocols for any cruise ship visiting in St. Kitts & Nevis include: all crew and all passengers over the age of 18 must be vaccinated; all passengers, crew, and children under the age of 18 must present a negative RT-PCR test within 72 hours of homeport embarkation.
The only bubble vaccinated tours and attractions will be offered to cruise passengers, and passengers and crew are not permitted to interact with the general population.
All personnel interacting with cruise vessel operations, including ship agents, port staff, taxi, and tour operators, must also be vaccinated.
The St. Kitts Tourism Authority, in conjunction with the Ministry of Health, has worked with stakeholders to develop fully vaccinated ‘Travel Approved’ bubble tours, to showcase the island’s one-of-a-kind attractions such as UNESCO World Heritage recognized Brimstone Hill Fortress, the St. Kitts Scenic Railway and Caribelle Batik.