German cruise ships coming to Port of Tampa - WFLA News Channel 8

German cruise ships coming to Port of Tampa

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The Tampa Port Authority Friday announced an agreement with a foreign tourism company that will bring a pair of cruise ships to the area.  

AIDA Cruises is based in Germany and markets itself as ‘the embodiment of casual cruising.’ The ships – AIDAvita and AIDAmar – will now call the Port of Tampa home.

“[The] announcement to come to Tampa is a milestone for us, not only at the port, but for all of our tourism and economic development partners in the region,” said Paul Anderson, TPA president and CEO. “We are thrilled to welcome AIDA to Tampa Bay and we know this will be the beginning of a long and rewarding relationship with this fine cruise line that has recognized our strong and distinct market and has decided to be a part of the growth we are experiencing in the region.”

AIDAvita will sail the first of four Western Caribbean cruises from Tampa beginning in December 2014. AIDAmar will sail seven cruises out of the Port beginning in 2015.

The agreement means the Port of Tampa will now be the home port for five of the world’s most popular cruise lines.

AIDAvita is the second ship in the company’s fleet and was originally launched in 2002. It has 384 crew members and a passenger capacity of 1,266. AIDAmar, a Sphinx Class ship, has a crew of 609 and a passenger capacity of 2,194.

AIDA Cruises is one of the fastest growing and most successful tourism-related businesses in Europe. The line owns, operates and markets a fleet of 10 of the most modern cruise ships in the world.

Within the next three years AIDA officials say their fleet will grown to 12 ships offering family friendly voyages in the Mediterranean, the North Sea, the Baltic Sea, the Caribbean and the Persian Gulf.

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