Grand Bahama
Hundreds expected to arrive on-board the MSC Poesia calling at Port Lucaya January 7th, 2012
By GBPA Public Relations dept.
Jan 5, 2012 - 6:04:51 PM

Hundreds of passengers from the MSC Poesia are expected to be ferried into the Port Lucaya Marketplace this coming Saturday.

Freeport, Grand Bahama – The Port Lucaya Marketplace will be the highlight experience for hundreds of passengers along with crew members of the MSC Poesia, which is expected to grace the shores of the Port Lucaya Marketplace (PLM) this coming Saturday, 7th January. With only two days before the much anticipated vessel arrives, tenants and management of the Marketplace plan to leave a lasting impression on visiting passengers.

According to Ms. Karen Ferguson-Bain, Marketing & Entertainment Coordinator, the Marketplace is buzzing with anticipation for what Saturday’s call will bring.  She notes that, while a number of the stores located at the Marketplace are new, quite a number of the business owners and operators are not. She states, “Some of them would have experienced the Big Red Boat or the call of the Queen Mary 2 and the increased traffic of tourists as a result, so they’re excited. Our tenants are preparing and looking forward to MSC’s call. They’re excited, we’re excited and everyone is ready!”

With this call being the first of its kind since the historic Big Red Boat and more recently the Queen Mary 2, it is hoped that more vessel calls would be accommodated in the Port Lucaya area. President of Bourbon Street Limited, Mrs. Yvette McSweeney, shared that PLM, which is situated in the heart of the Port Lucaya strip, would be an ideal location as an alternative port of call for cruise vessels. “The Port Lucaya Marketplace has the amenities to comfortably accommodate cruise visitors on site or within a three minute walk. Nothing needs to be added, everything is here and operational. There is live music and entertainment, shopping, dining and the beach within walking distance. It doesn’t get any better,” McSweeney shared.

Management at the Port Lucaya Marina is also excited about the MSC Poesia’s upcoming visit. Ms. Karen Pinder, Co-Manager of the Port Lucaya Marina says that management and staff of the Marina are pleased to welcome the passengers and crew of the MSC Poesia. She says that the upcoming call will prove beneficial for not only the Marketplace, but for surrounding businesses as well. Pinder states, “This call bodes well for all; the businesses, tour operators, taxi drivers, etc. everyone can benefit.  A lot of work has gone into preparing for this visit.” “We are happy that they’re coming and look forward to receiving them again in the future,” she continued.

The MSC Poesia will arrive off shore of the Grand Lucaya beach at 7:00am (0700), with a scheduled departure at 6:00pm (1800). With the assistance of the Ministry of Tourism, a full array of entertainment is expected to greet passengers as they arrive by ferry to the Marketplace. 

Ferguson-Bain shared that there will be live music, limbo dancing, a Junkanoo ‘rush out’ and much more planned to greet disembarking guest. She also added that due to the high volume of passengers expected to arrive, a great deal of planning has gone into preparing the ‘Count Basie Square and a Tour Reception area for arriving guest with pre-booked tours. This she says will help to direct passengers to their respective tours, but also to alleviate any clustering or ‘bottle necks in the disembarking area at the Marketplace. She adds, “Tenants of the Marketplace are also hoping that Saturday’s call at Port Lucaya will be the beginning of regular cruise visits to the area.”

The MSC Poesia is a 93,300 ton vessel with a capacity of approximately 3,013 passengers. It is one of 12 vessels in the MSC Cruises fleet sailing year round in the Mediterranean and seasonally in Northern Europe, the Atlantic Ocean, the Caribbean, Canada/New England, South America, the Indian Ocean, South and West Africa.

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