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Louis Cruise Lines to operate weekly

The luxury Cruise Ship “MV Aquamarine”

A plaque exchange ceremony was held on board the cruise vessel "MV Aquamarine" of Louis Cruise Lines, to mark its inaugural call at the Passenger Jetty at the Colombo Port.

The vessel "MV Aquamarine" is a Luxury Cruise ship which has 405 cabins and can carry 1,200 passengers. This will be the first regular fixed day cruise operation to Sri Lanka, and it is expected to increase the number of visitors to the country by 2,000 per month. The vessel will ply between Cochin, Male, and Colombo with weekly calls at the Colombo Port. It will arrive in Colombo every Monday at 1400hrs and depart every Tuesday at 1500hrs.

Plaques were exchanged between the Managing Director of Capt. Nihal Keppetipola and a Master of the vessel "MV Aquamarine" Capt. Stathis Romeos and the officials of Messrs. Aitken Spence Shipping Ltd. to mark the occasion.

SLPA Managing Director, Capt. Nihal Keppetipola said: "This move opens a new era for the tourism industry in post-conflict Sri Lanka. Sri Lanka is gearing up for the development of the tourism in the northeast".

"The global cruise industry generates an estimated US $ 15 billion a year in passenger expenditure and is the fastest growing sector of the travel industry. Therefore, it is important that our ports and coastal destinations are carefully managed and promoted to ensure that they are well placed to continue reaping the long-term economic benefits of this lucrative market. I firmly believe that this move will undoubtedly serve as a launching pad uplift Colombo as South Asia's premier cruise destination", he said.
(DN 10122009)

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