Hamburg is having a busy May, according to Nadine Palatz, managing director of the Hamburg Cruise Center, including several maiden calls, the 826th anniversary of the port with six cruise ships in town, and a total of 40 calls for the month and more than 100,000 passengers.
In a prepared statement, Palatz summarized the month, starting on May 1 with a call by the
MSC Splendida, the largest passenger ship that will sail from the Hanseatic city this summer. The call was celebrated with the traditional exchange of plaques between the ship’s captain and the port captain. Hamburg's Senator for Economics, Frank Horch, and MSC’s Executive Chairman Pierfrancesco Vago were present. The HafenCity Cruise Center also hosted a family-friendly event for visitors and ship enthusiasts with live music and entertainment.
On the following weekend from May 8 to 10, the festivities were focused on the 826th anniversary of the port. The AIDAbella, AIDAsol, Amadea, Artania, Europa 2 and Queen Elizabeth were in town. The highlight was Saturday night, when AIDA fireworks lit up the night sky over Hamburg. According to Palatz, hundreds of thousands of spectators watched the events.
Other maiden calls during the month were the Ocean Diamond on May 12, Poseidon Expeditions’ Sea Spirit on May 16, to be followed by Mein Schiff 4 on May 22.
One maiden call was also celebrated with a sea shanty: On April 30, for the passengers of the Regal Princess, a Hamburg Chamber of Commerce shanty choir performed. Palatz said that the chamber of commerce offers cruise companies a range of services, such as support for PR activities or welcomes with a fire boat.
“It is important to us that a ship’s maiden call to our Hanseatic city is a special experience,” said Palatz.