Destination Welcomes 30,349 Pax & Crew on Tuesday. Arvia, a Symbol of Optimism makes Inaugural Port Call | SOULIGA NEWSDAY

Port St. Maarten with six ships in port

PORT ST. MAARTEN – Tuesday, January 17, 2023, marked the largest cruise single day for the 2022-2023 cruise season, a record for destination St. Maarten when Port St. Maarten welcomed 30,349 passengers and crew from six cruise ships.

The ships in port were the Anthem of the Seas, Arvia, Celebrity Constellation, Grandeur of the Seas, MSC Seaside and Symphony of the Seas, brought in 21,723 passengers and 8,626 crew.

PSG Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Alexander Gumbs said on Thursday: “This is a significant development for the destination when we look back at what we and the region, and the world had to endure with the pandemic and the shutdown of the cruise industry for 15-months.

“We are on a healthy track for the 2022-2023 season where we see vibrancy in various sectors. We have much to celebrate, but at the same time we must keep putting our best efforts forward in making sure we give our guests the best island experiences each and every day as they visit our shores.”

Port St. Maarten, one of the destinations in high demand in the Northeastern Caribbean welcomed another new vessel for the season, namely Arvia, P&O Cruises’ second Excel-class ship which made its inaugural call on January 17. Arvia has been described by P&O Cruises as a symbol of optimism for the future of the industry.

Arvia is the sister ship to Iona. The name of Arvia has the meaning of, “from the seashore.” The new cruise ship has a capacity for 5,200 passengers and 1800 crew, with 16 decks and has a tonnage of 184,700.

The vessel was officially turned over on December 15, 2022, at the Meyer Werft.  The vessel is the latest addition to the P&O Cruises fleet, and the second ship to be powered by liquefied natural gas (LNG), considered as the marine industry’s most advanced fuel technology to date.

The Arvia had its maiden cruise on December 23, 2022, and then departed for the Caribbean on January 6, 2023, for a winter season.

According to P&O Cruises, Arvia, is the latest evolution in the P&O Cruises experience, and embodies the newest trends in travel, dining and entertainment and is the epitome of a sunshine resort sailing year-round to the warmest climates. It takes its sister ship Iona’s design aesthetic and general arrangement but provides new and exciting outside and inside spaces which make the most of Arvia’s deployment to the Caribbean and the Mediterranean.

P&O Cruises is a British cruise line with a fleet of seven ships each have their own appeal from family friendly or exclusively for adults, and travels to over 200 destinations worldwide. The company is part of Carnival Corporation & PLC.

Source: Soualiga Newsday,349-pax-crew-on-tuesday-arvia,-a-symbol-of-optimism-makes-inaugural-port-call&Itemid=450


  1. How is at present the infrastructure of the island geared in order to be able to receive 6 monstrous cruise liners in a single day at the port?
    Does the island has enough busses to provide cruise passengers with their chosen tours of the island?
    Does the island has enough taxis to do individual tours with guests?
    Are there sufficient major roads available for the traffic on days that there will be a similar amount of cruise liners?
    Personally having sailed a long time on cruiseships in the late 70’s and 80’s and subsequent having been government employed on the island in the capacity of Harbourmaster/Chied Pilot and having advised government NOT to get too many cruisships visiting per day. This at the time, was before the cruisepiers were constructed as well as totally disregarded by the powers to be, with the result of major overcrowding furinf said busy days. In this case referring for instance to the situation of many cruis vessels visiting the port of Charlotte Amalie, USVI, where it usually took two to three hours for passengers to be shipped from the dock to the center of the town.
    I do pitty the inhabitants on these totally overcrowded days!!
    M.J.Oosterwijk, Master Mariner retired.