Abu Dhabi’s new state-of-the-art cruise terminal has now opened at Mina Zayed.
The high capacity terminal, which can receive three cruise vessels at one time, is now open to welcome visitors from around the world to the UAE’s capital.
Helping to boost tourism in the region, the new terminal will offer guests easy access to the city centre from cruise vessels.
Welcoming 111 scheduled vessel calls with over 200,000 passengers during the 2015/2016 season, the new terminal expects to increase to over 300,000 passengers by 2020.
Captain Mohamed Juma Al Shamisi, CEO of Abu Dhabi Ports, said: “We have achieved a major milestone by completing this ambitious cruise project within one year. This will serve Abu Dhabi’s rapidly growing cruise industry.”
The facility offers a range of passenger-friendly facilities including tourist information services, gift shops and passport border control counters to ensure smooth and timely customs process.
The design was chosen from four shortlisted competition entries by HH Sheikh Hazza bin Zayed Al Nahyan, national security advisor and vice chairman of the Executive Council of Abu Dhabi.
Using a variety of Arabic ornaments, colours and shapes, the attractive lattice-work roof design pays homage to the country’s national tree, the ghaf, while the interior beams take inspiration from dhow sailing vessels.
Passenger numbers have increased five-fold since 2006 and with the opening of the first cruise beach stopover at Sir Bani Yas Island, Abu Dhabi is aiming to become the world’s premier winter-sun cruising destination.