Malaysia welcomes international cruise ship Quantum of the Seas

11 JUNE 2015, BY
PENANG - The world’s most revolutionary new cruise ship Quantum of the Seas by global cruise brand Royal Carribbean International made her maiden call on June 10 to Swetthenham Pier Cruise Terminal, Penang.
The same cruise ship is scheduled to berth in Boustead Cruise Centre (BCC), Pulau Indah, Port Klang on 13 June 2015. The two stopovers are part of a three-day round trip from Singapore to Port Klang at the end of the ship’s 14-night voyage from Dubai to Singapore.

Welcome receptions by Tourism Malaysia and cultural performances were held at both ports for the 4,300 passengers and 1,500 crew members aboard the vessel.

The welcome reception by Tourism Malaysia is an effort under its Maiden Call programme, an annual activity to welcome ships berthing for the first time in Malaysia and to promote cruise tourism and attract more ship operators to berth in Selangor and Kuala Lumpur, in particular.

Quantum of the Seas was officially launched on 2 May 2015 in New York. Spreading over 18 decks, she can accommodate up to a maximum capacity of 4,905 passengers.  Some of the ship’s attractions include zip lines, real trees, boxing rings, bumper cars, Jamie's Italian by Jamie Oliver, and the world's first sea-bound amphitheatre, while the jewel in the ship’s crown is a London Eye-like capsule that allows passengers to get a 360 degree view of the ship from 300 feet above the ocean.

Over the last few years, Malaysia has seen an encouraging number of cruise ships calling at the country’s ports. Last year, a total of 356 international cruise ships with 352,322 passengers called at the country’s six primary ports, namely Port Klang, Penang, Melaka, Langkawi, Kota Kinabalu and Kuching.

From January to March this year, a total of 197 international cruise ships called at the country compared to 157 in 2014, registering a growth of 25%. For the same period, the country received 199,725 cruise passengers compared to 150,473 passengers, signifying an increase of 32.7%.

Developing cruise tourism has been outlined in the Tourism National Key Economic Area (NKEA), under its sixth Entry Point Project (EPP) – Creating a Straits Riviera Cruise Playground. In an effort to capitalise on an international cruise passenger market that has grown at an average of 14% annually in the past 10 years, this EPP will see the development of a Straits Riviera, comprising the six primary ports and other secondary ports.