Bahamas Paradise christens new ship, MV Classica and sails out of Palm Beach

Bahamas Paradise doubles its cruise business to Grand Bahama with christening of new ship MV Classica

FORT LAUDERDALE  – With the recent ribbon cutting and inaugural ceremony and voyage of its new ship MV Grand Classica, The Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line’s unique two day cruise and stay, out of Palm Beach, Florida to Grand Bahama Island is now daily.

Fondly referred to by the cruise line’s President, Kevin Sheehan, Jr., as  “our Italian beauty,” the new ship now provides the opportunity for the cruise line to potentially deliver as many as 500,000 passengers to Grand Bahama Island annually, from the Port of Palm Beach, Florida.

The Grand Classica and its sister ship, The Grand Celebration, will continue making  two night cruises to The Bahamas with the option for stay over at one of Grand Bahamas’ resorts, doubling the business of the cruise line.

The ship, which has the capacity for 1,680 passengers, features a crew of some 600 persons hailing from almost 60 countries.  The totally refurbished 27-year old vessel is captained by Meinhardt Hansen, of Faroe Islands, Iceland, who shared at the inaugural ceremony that he began sailing in his early teens, as his Island is known for being an Island of seafarers.

The new ship boasts 10 decks, a large casino, spa, pools, eight dining options, live entertainment, shopping and a variety of lounges.    The ship’s 658 staterooms include spacious interior cabins, ocean views and some suites.

Bahamas Paradise christens new ship, MV Classica and sails out of Palm Beach
MV Grand Classica
Photo Credit: William Leonard

The inaugural ceremonies and ribbon cutting in the ship’s ‘Legends Theater’, was a well-attended affair.  Attendees included business and political leaders from the Palm Beach area, travel agents, media and loyal guests of the cruise line (one couple shared that over the past 7-8 years, they have cruised with Bahamas Paradise up to 175 times).

Palm Beach County Mayor, Melissa Mckinlay, in brief remarks before the ribbon cutting, said that her community had declared, Friday, April 13th as MV Grand Classica Day and she said that Bahamas Paradise Cruise Lines doubling means a $75m impact to Palm Beach County.

MV Grand Classica ribbon cutting
MV Grand Classica ribbon cutting

Providing comments on the cruise line’s impact on its Bahama Island homeport, The Islands Of The Bahamas Minister of State for Grand Bahama, the Honorable Kwasi Thompson, said that the cruise line is a great partner with both Grand Bahama and the entire Bahamas.   He expressed thanks to the cruise line on behalf of the government and people of The Bahamas and shared that when the Island of Grand Bahama was struck by a major hurricane a few years ago, Bahamas Paradise stuck by the Island. He said that 2018 is a great year for Grand Bahama and that it will also be a great year for Bahamas Paradise.

Bahamas Paradise is the only cruise line that offers cruises with the option of  a resort stay.  To this end, Minister Thompson shared that one of the largest properties on Grand Bahama, The Grand Lucayan Resort – currently closed – should be re-opening within the year.  The Minister said about the resort that within the next few months, the negotiations should be concluded and the refurbishments completed.

Minister Thompson, expressed recognition of the Palm Beach officials at the ceremony and issued a welcome for them to visit the Island of Grand Bahama not only for a vacation but also to do business.  He said that Grand Bahama has been marked by The Bahamas, to become the technology hub of the Caribbean.

“Grand Bahama is the best Island in The Bahamas for all those companies interested in investing in technology, interested in investing in crypto-currency, interested in blockchain technology,” the Minister said, adding,  “Grand Bahama Island is the place for you to visit come and get some sand between your toes and the beach experience.  You can come and enjoy a wonderful experience and get some business done at the same time.”

President of the cruise line, Mr. Sheehan agreed with Minister Thompson about Grand Bahamas’ being an ideal destination.  He said that because of the beauty of Grand Bahama and the trip there on the Bahamas Paradise, “it can be called the bragging vacation.  You go down, have a great time on the ship, and then spend a few glorious days in Grand Bahama, which offers so much to see and do.”

South Florida Caribbean News

The Team provides news and information for the Caribbean-American community in South Florida and beyond.

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