The ground breaking marks the official start of construction of the terminal and came the day after the new Durban Beachfront Promenade was launched.
Both the new promenade and the new cruise terminal in the city form part of the much wider R1.3-billion Point Development project, which aims to transform the Point area of Durban into a vibrant tourism and commercial hub.
The Durban Cruise Terminal will sit adjacent to the mixed-use development with modern apartments, hotels, malls and retail spaces.
It is expected to be operational by January 2021, just in time for MSC Cruises’ biggest-ever South African cruise season, with plans to homeport two cruise ships in the country for the first time is several years.
“The multi-user terminal will make Durban an even more desirable destination for cruise ships from all over the world, which will substantially boost tourism numbers, create thousands of jobs and lead to supplier development,” said Ross Volk, Managing Director of MSC Cruises South Africa and Director of KCT.
The growth in cruising’s popularity in South Africa led to MSC Cruises’ decision to deploy two ships to South African shores for the winter 2020/2021 cruise season.
MSC Opera will home port in Cape Town and MSC Musica will sail roundtrip out of Durban. It will be the first time ever that the cruise line has homeported two ships of a different class in the city.
MSC Cruises’ commitment to the country was recently recognised at the South African Investment Conference, where the company received a special acknowledgement from the country’s President Cyril Ramaphosa for its investment in local tourism infrastructure.
MSC Group has also invested in South Africa’s skills development with the opening of its Shosholoza Ocean Academy, in partnership with the national government’s Department of Trade and Industry.
The academy will provide free three-month training courses for young South Africans, with those who successfully complete the training course becoming eligible for employment onboard MSC Cruises’ ships around the world.
Categories: SA Cruise News