Basseterre, St. Kitts, December 17, 2018 (SKNIS): With the first-time visit of the MS Norwegian Escape on December 17, 2018, a total of seven ships have now made inaugural calls to St. Kitts for the 2018/2019 cruise season.

According to tourism stakeholders, this is evident that cruise tourism is moving in the right direction. With the increase in the number of cruise ships visiting the island, it is essential that the island completes its second cruise pier, which is due to be finished in the latter part of 2019.

Speaking at a plaque exchange onboard the ship, Permanent Secretary for the Ministry of Tourism, Carlene Henry-Morton, said that St. Kitts is happy to have welcomed the ship to its shores. She added that it was an honour for the Norwegian Cruise Lines to add St. Kitts as one of its destination stops. Mrs. Henry-Morton said that the island looks forward to welcoming more of the cruise liner’s ships.

Captain Niklas Persson, Master of the Norwegian Escape, said that he is looking forward to more calls on the island. His previous visit to St. Kitts was on the Norwegian Spirit. He commended the warm and hospitable nature of the people of St. Kitts and Nevis.

The inaugural visit of the Norwegian Escape makes it the 11th ship in the Norwegian Cruise Liners’ fleet of 17 to visit the island. The Norwegian ships that have visited St. Kitts include the Breakaway, the Getaway, the Epic, the Spirit, the Sun, the Star, the Dawn, the Gem and the Pearl, and the Jade, which made its inaugural call on December 11, 2018.

Norwegian Escape is a cruise ship for Norwegian Cruise Line in service since October 2015. It was built by Meyer Werft in Papenburg, Germany. It has a guest capacity of 4,266 double occupancy and a ship crew of 1730 men and women from over 70 countries. It is the largest vessel to homeport year-round in the city of Miami, Florida.