A company associated with Philippine casino operator Bloomberry Resorts Corp intends to open by the third quarter of 2021 a facility near the Solaire Resort and Casino in Manila where cruise ships can make stops, reports Seatrade Cruise News.
Bloomberry Resorts had flagged to investors such a plan in a filing to the Philippine Stock Exchange last year.
In a report posted online on Thursday, the outlet quoted Guillaume Lucci, an adviser to Bloomberry Cruise Terminals Inc, as saying: “We have begun the construction tender process and an award is expected to be offered in August or September 2019, with a 24-month construction timeline.”
Bloomberry Cruise Terminals intends to run facilities for cruise ships – including ones serving the mainland China market – to land and embark passengers near the Solaire casino resort. There would also be some passenger reception facilities at Salomague in the far northern Philippines.
The company is an arm of Sureste Properties Inc, a unit of Bloomberry Resorts. The group is controlled by Filipino business tycoon Enrique Razon.
Mr Lucci was quoted as saying the Manila facility would be called the Solaire Cruise Center.
It will have a pier with two berths. One will be for ships up to 365 metres (about 1,200 feet) long and the other for ships up to 345 metres long.
The facility will thus be able to handle large cruise ships, including the Oasis class operated by the Royal Caribbean International and the Global class operated by Dream Cruises brand of Genting Hong Kong Ltd.
Mr Lucci said: “Our plan is to have this operational by the third-quarter-of-2021 season, with a clear timeline for cruise lines to plan their schedules to begin calls at Solaire Cruise Center.”
The facility is said to be near Solaire’s 8.3-hectare site.
The report quoted Mr Lucci as saying that at Salomague, cruise ships would anchor offshore, and passengers would be moved to dry land via tenders.
He said the Salomague facility would be completed by the first week of October.
“We had a short period to launch, but have so far been able to confirm the first few cruise calls from December 2019 onwards, including Royal Caribbean’s Spectrum of the Seas and Genting’s World Dream [pictured] in 2020,” Mr Lucci said. The former vessel is said to be making its maiden trip to the Philippines.
Both ships can accommodate over 5,000 passengers, according to the news outlet.
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