09 May 2019 - The cruiser Marella Discovery of the British company Marella Cruises sailed into the Port of Kotor for the very first time. For the occasion, representatives of the Port of Kotor, the Port Authority of Montenegro and representatives of the Bar-based port operator in Montenegro for the Marella Cruises ships, the company Allegra, visited the newly arrived cruiser.
The Director of the Port of Kotor's Administrative sector, Snežana Jonica, and the owner and Director of the company Allegra, Mihailo Vukić, presented welcoming gifts to the general manager of the cruiser’s hotel department, Demetrios Charalambous, and kindly wished the cruiser and its crew a warm welcome to Montenegro.
Marella Discovery, which arrived at the Bay of Kotor from Dubrovnik on May 9, brought 1.800 British passengers and more than 740 crew members from over 40 countries of the world to Montenegro.
Charalambous expressed his enthusiasm for the natural beauties and cultural heritage of the bay and Kotor, pointing out that for the passengers of his cruiser, this is one of the most prestigious stations on their Mediterranean cruise, which ends on the Greek island of Corfu.
"This is a wonderful destination that offers our guests a lot of content and they are delighted with the Bay of Kotor and with Kotor as a city. The main challenge in regards to cruisers is to try to set up an adequate schedule so that there are not too many boats and too many tourists in the area at the same time. A large crowd would not be in your interest as the hosts, nor for us as operators of ships who want to have satisfied passengers," said the experienced Greek born in Cyprus, who has over 20 years of experience in cruisers service.
The Marella Cruises Company, formerly British Thomson Cruises, has changed owners a few years ago and now operates as a segment of the Anglo-German tourist giant TUI.
Marella (which translates as "shining sea" in the old Celtic language) is specialized for the British market and has six ships, of which the Marella Celebration and Marella Discovery will regularly come to Kotor every seven days. Unlike other cruising companies operating in the Mediterranean, Marella Cruises is very eager to travel to new destinations and it even opens the so-called home port stations in ports such as the Greek Corfu and Croatian Dubrovnik. Therefore, the representatives of the company Allegra and the Port of Kotor have highlighted the positive aspects and advantages that Kotor and Bar can offer them as home port stations, given the proximity of the Tivat Airport and other benefits.
Namely, Marella Cruises, as part of the conglomerate's TUI, transports British tourists from 22 UK cities to their home port stations in the Mediterranean via airplanes, where they board the company’s cruises. These planned methods of transport also create a significant benefit for the local economy of the destinations where the home port stations are located at, because they supply the ships, arrange transport for passengers and offer a range of other services. These services, as they pointed out from Allegra and the Port of Kotor, could create significant benefits for the Montenegrin economy, assuming that the British company decides that Kotor and Bar shall receive the status of their home port station.
On the occasion of the arrival of the cruiser, guests from Montenegro were able to visit the 264-meter long cruiser Marella Discovery and get acquainted with the contents that it offers to its passengers. This 69.130 gross ton was built in 1996 in France as the "Splendour of the Seas" for the US Royal Caribbean Cruises company, whose fleet it belonged until four years ago when it got a new owner and a new name. On its 11 decks, Marella Disovery has a total of 918 passenger cabins, seven restaurants, seven themed bars, an entertainment centre, cinema, two swimming pools, a shopping centre and a fitness centre. The cruiser also has two special attractions - the wall for free climbing and a mini-golf course.
Source: S.L., Vijesti