North & East

Carnival Horizon goes to Ocho Rios today

Tuesday, October 02, 2018

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Carnival Cruise Line's newest ship, Carnival Horizon, will make its maiden voyage to Jamaica today.

A high-level team of Jamaican officials, including Tourism Minister Edmund Bartlett; and Minister without Portfolio in the Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation Karl Samuda are expected to be on hand in Ocho Rios, St Ann, for the official welcome.

The 3,936-passenger ship, a sister to Carnival Vista, made its ocean debut in April earlier this year with a series of Mediterranean sailings, following its departure from Barcelona, Spain.

Its maiden voyage to Ocho Rios is being seen as a precursor to a bumper cruise-ship season where Carnival, the world's biggest cruise company, will be sending a number of its flagship vessels to the resort town.

“Carnival has been a friend of Jamaica for many years, and having its newest vessel, the Horizon, here is testament to that long-standing love affair,” Tourism Minister Edmund Bartlett told JIS News.

“This ship is the second of its luxury Vista-class brand and will be a welcome addition to our cruise-shipping itinerary. With nearly 4,000 passengers, the resort town of Ocho Rios can expect to get its fair share of the tourism pie,” he added.

The tourism minister also noted that “the best is yet to come”, adding that the visit of the Horizon is the “fulfilment of a promise” by Carnival's owner, Mickey Arison, who earlier in the year made a commitment to send his company's newest vessels to Jamaica.

Bartlett said that with the cruise-shipping season not yet in “high gear” and with the world's largest cruise ships — the Royal Caribbean Oasis-class vessels — expected to once again make their annual trek into the Falmouth Port, “cruise shipping is again expected to have another banner year”.

The second in the line's highly successful Vista-class, Carnival Horizon also offers fun innovations like the bike-ride-in-the-sky aerial attraction, SkyRide; an IMAX Theatre; the Havana section with tropics-inspired staterooms and its own pool; and Family Harbour, featuring extra-roomy accommodations and the Family Harbour Lounge.

The third vessel in the Vista-class series, Carnival Panorama, is currently under construction and is set to debut in Long Beach, California, in December 2019.

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