If the Norwegian Breakaway, Norwegian Getaway and Breakaway Plus-class ships from Norwegian Cruise Line weren’t enough to garner attention, the company has just announced the purchase of 75 acres of tropical land in Southern Belize. Consisting of two adjoining islands, Harvest Caye, as the property is called, will be developed into a new eco-friendly cruise destination (concept rendering above) for Western Caribbean itineraries.
Kevin Sheehan, Norwegian Cruise Line’s president and CEO, explains, “as our fleet continues to grow to 15 ships by 2017, we expect that we will double the number of guests sailing on our Western Caribbean itineraries and, once this new destination is complete, bring four times as many guests to Belize than we do today. In our quest to continuously look for new and exciting destinations for our guests, we plan to develop a cruise destination focused on sustainable design and eco-friendly principles that will retain the natural beauty and local culture of this tropical paradise.”
Norwegian will invest a total of $50 million in the project to establish the port-of-call. The master plan is not completely locked in yet, but the final product is expected to include an island component with docking/tendering facilities as well as a connection to the mainland. Anticipated elements include a floating pier, island village, marina, transportation hub for inland tours, beach area and lagoon with a variety of aquatic activities.
According to the line, “the goal is to design an authentic experience grounded in the storyline of nature, ancient culture, art, adventure and music that celebrates Belizean, Mayan and Garifuna history and culture.” Norwegian has employed IDEA Inc., an industry leader in branded destination development, to design the project. This property will presumably be utilized in addition to Norwegian’s existing private island destination, Great Stirrup Cay in the Bahamas.
While no date has yet been set for the new development’s grand unveiling, more information about the project and its positive economic impact can be found at the cruise line’s Facebook page here.
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HEADER IMAGE SOURCE: NORWEGIAN CRUISE LINE