MS Noordam to attract new clientele to Gladstone
THE Auckland Point terminal will welcome the first Holland America cruise ship, the MS Noordam, on Sunday.
Weighing 82,500 tonnes and measuring 285.3m in length, the MS Noordam is expected to dock in Gladstone from noon to 11pm, bringing with her almost 2000 passengers and more than 800 crew.
The ship is en route from Sydney to Papua New Guinea, with Gladstone being the second stop on the itinerary.
GAPDL CEO Darryl Branthwaite knows the MS Noordam well having travelled on her in 2014.
"Because it's Holland America it attracts a different demographic," he said.
"I've only done one cruise and this was the ship.
"It's a stunning ship and quite a big ship for the amount of people on board. There's lots of space and the cabins are bigger.
"It's got more restaurants, bigger dining, there's a real focus on the entertainment and they've got a massive auditorium with a huge amount of shops and experiences."
The international cruise liner will receive the royal treatment with a Civic Welcome Ceremony held at East Shores at 2pm.
It's departure time is also different to previous ships, offering passengers a chance to experience Gladstone in a different light.
Given that Holland America ships attract a different clientele, Mr Branthwaite said he hoped they would spend big at the Feast on East Markets.
"There's all sorts of wants and needs that are different. When Carnival Legend and Carnival Spirit came through they had a lot of families on board," he said.
"We're hoping to have the markets still going right through until 9pm with entertainment as well.
"We want to keep the whole East Shores area alive while this ship is in."