St. John’s, Antigua and Barbuda: Minister for Tourism Hon. Asot Michael Welcomed the Thomson Cruises and MV Thomson Celebration, Captain, and her integral crew. said “It is a real pleasure and honor to welcome one of the flagship vessels of the Thomson Cruise fleet to our port. While this is the first time that we have the pleasure of welcoming MS Thomson Celebration, it is not our first vessel from Thomson Cruises, so we are very happy to be continuing our positive relationship with such an integral and established partner in the European cruise market.”
We are genuinely honored to be here today addressing your captain and crew, so please accept the warmest welcome on behalf of both The Government of Antigua and Barbuda as well as her people. The people of Antigua and Barbuda are welcoming you with open arms and warm hearts.
We would like to thank you for the confidence you have placed in us as a destination and we promise that your 1,000 plus guests and over 500 hundred, crew members will have an unforgettable experience. As one of the smaller ships in the Thomson fleet you are able to provide a friendlier and more intimate experience for your passengers that I believe is a perfect fit for our wonderful island of Antigua. I may be biased, but I truly believe we have the warmest and most friendly people in the Caribbean – our people are what distinguishes us from the rest, and are the key factor in providing visitors with an unforgettable experience. Though, we know your passengers will be particularly hard to be impressed as Thomson Celebration does boast 5 restaurants, 6 bars, 2 pools and a casino!
Your arrival is incredibly important for Antigua’s economy, so please know we will be taking the utmost care of your passengers as well as your vessel. All of us know this is integral to the future of our tourism industry. As with most Caribbean countries, tourism is imperative to the success of Antigua and Barbuda and your guests are important part of the equation, and we know it is our duty to provide you and your guests and also your crew with a stay and experience that is above and beyond your expectations.
The Government takes this role very seriously. As part of our promise to improve services on island, our Government has taken steps to ensure we’re providing the most desirable product possible to visitors and residents. We aim to become the port-of-call of choice for those travelling to the Caribbean from around the world.
So while it will be impossible to mimic the experience your passengers have on such a wonderful vessel, we do hope that the positive experience that your guests and crew will enjoy on shore will compliment the standards and activities they experience on Thomson Celebration. We want your passengers raving about their short stay with us, proving that Thomson Cruises’ faith in Antigua and Barbuda as a new port for this flagship vessel is well founded.
The good news is that work on realizing this vision for St John’s has already begun, so facilities and plans are well in place to offer a first class service not just your guests, but for your crew as well.
So on behalf of all our cruise industry stakeholders and the people of Antigua and Barbuda let me just say once again welcome!
From the bottom of our hearts we absolutely wish you a most enjoyable time with us today. We hope that you will have the opportunity to appreciate the beauty of our islands, the unforgettable culture and most importantly the warmth of our people. We look forward to be able to greet you and your wonderful vessel once again very soon and wish you a safe onward voyage!