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Queen Mary 2’s port call to Oman’s tourist status

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Muscat: One of the world’s largest cruise liners, Queen Mary 2, will visit Oman on Tuesday, according to the cruise liner’s local spokesman.

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Muscat: One of the world’s largest cruise liners, Queen Mary 2, will visit Oman on Tuesday, according to the cruise liner’s local spokesman.

Khimji Ramdas said that Queen Mary 2’s port call will put Muscat on the world’s cruise liners’ map. “This is the best way to showcase Oman’s cruise facilities internationally. The length of the ship is 345 meters and the maximum radius of the turning basin is 300 meters. Bringing Queen Mary 2 is one of the biggest challenges and Port Sultan Qaboos has brought the vessel alongside safely before. They have illustrated their technical supremacy by bringing the vessel into the port without turning the ship in the turning basin,” said MC Jose, CEO, projects and logistics, Khimji Ramdas.

He also said that it will be great to see such a big ship anchoring at the Sultan Qaboos Port. “I think the schools should take an initiative and bring the children to the Muttrah Corniche to see this ship entering and sailing.”

She will come in at 8 am in the morning and will sail at 6 pm. “One can take a close up picture when she comes close to the Muttrah Corniche to enter the port. It will be a great opportunity to have a family picture with Queen Mary 2 in the background,” said M C Jose.

The Queen Mary 2 can accommodate 2,620 passengers and 1,253 officers and crew. In her first 10 years of operation, the ocean liner has undertaken more than 420 voyages, including 200 trans-Atlantic crossings. Queen Mary 2 is Cunard’s flagship and offers a huge space on board and an array of state-of-the-art facilities including a 3D Cinema, planetarium and a spa.

History was made in 2010 when she made her maiden visit at Port Sultan Qaboos at Muscat. “It was the first time a ship of such voluminous proportions entered the Port Sultan Qaboos. At that time the port was very congested as cargo loading and unloading used to take place there. But now the port is very safe and there is a lot of space to move around. So, this is a unique opportunity for the residents in Muscat to witness such a majestic ship,” Jose said.

It was learnt that Queen Mary 2 will occupy two berths compared to a normal ship which occupies only one. “The management and staff of Khimji Ramdas Shipping is delighted to have this opportunity of bringing in Queen Mary 2 into Oman. This important port call became a reality with the whole hearted support of the Port Service Corporation, different departments of the ROP such as Customs, immigration and coast guard. The tourism ministry extended tremendous support for convincing the Cruise Line owners for attracting cruise vessels to Oman,” he added.

Khimji Ramdas said that they alone are set to receive around 300,000 tourists from all over the world this season. Altogether, they will be handling 134 luxurious cruise ships.

The cruise season started on October 18 last year when Seabourn Odyssey reached Salalah and will come to end on June 13, this year when CS Sea Princess will be leaving Muscat.

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Editor in chief is Linda Hohnholz.