Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Cruising into Penang waters

MORE cruise ships, including the famed Queen Mary II which can carry up to 6,500 passengers, will be docking in Penang next year.

State Tourism Development and Culture Committee chairman Danny Law Heng Kiang said the prestigious cruise ship will call at the port early next year.

“Currently, we have about 35 different international cruise ships visiting Penang and one of the regular ones is the Star Cruise, which makes port call on a weekly basis.

“Next year, 40 different cruise ships will stop in Penang,” he told a press conference after welcoming passengers from the Sun Princess liner at Tanjung City Marina last Thursday.

Lawrence Pakianathan, Intercruises Shore Side and Port Services operational business development manager for Malay-sia, Brunei and Indonesia, said each of these cruises carry an average of 2,000 passengers.

“It’ll be a great boost to the state’s tourism industry,” he said adding that Swettenham Pier would be able to accommodate two ships once work on the pier’s expansion is completed.

Siblings Hayley, 25, and Jarred Stephen, 24, from Sydney, who were on their first visit to Penang, said they planned to go on George Town’s heritage trail.

“The warm weather here is so com- fortable as it’s winter back home,” Jarred said.

They were among 2,100 passengers of the Sun Princess who were here for a half-day stop before leaving for Phuket. The other port calls in the cruise’s 15-day tour include Langkawi, Port Klang and Singapore before returning to Australia

The cruise ship last visited Penang on June 18 and will return again next month.

Source : STAR
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