L to R: Port of Seattle Commission President Tom Albro, Commissioner Courtney Gregoire, Howard Sherman, Executive VP of Onboard Revenue and Destination Development for Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd Howard, Seattle Mayor Ed Murray, Visit Seattle Executive Director Tom Norwalk, Commissioner Stephanie Bowman, Executive Secretary Seattle Building & Construction Trades Council Monty Anderson, Commissioner John Creighton and Interim CEO of Port of Seattle Dave Soike toast the improvements made to the Bell Street Cruise Terminal in a reopening celebration May 23, 2017. Photo by Don Wilson, Port of Seattle.

The Port of Seattle and Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings marked the grand re-opening of the Bell Street Cruise Terminal at the port’s Pier 66 building in a ceremony on Tuesday morning.

According to the port, the newly renovated terminal features three times the square footage within the same walls of the prior facility, and is designed to handle the 4-000 passenger Norwegian Bliss, which arrives next summer.

An estimated $30 million dollars in improvements were made to the Bell Street Cruise Terminal as part of a joint agreement between Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings and the Port of Seattle. 

“We have a long history with Norwegian from when we first started in the Alaska cruise market over 15 years ago, and we are thrilled with their unprecedented investment today,” said Port of Seattle Commissioner Stephanie Bowman. “Opening Bell Street Cruise Terminal today is the celebration of a community partnership for success.”

The port and Norwegian signed a 15-year strategic agreement in 2015.

“We couldn’t be more pleased to have had the opportunity to work with our partners at the Port of Seattle to enhance the guest experience at the Bell Street Cruise Terminal,” said Howard Sherman, executive vice-president of Onboard Revenue and Destination Development for Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd. “Together, we have increased usage capacity by more than 300 percent, created a plush new lounge for suites guests, enlarged the space for all guests awaiting embarkation and much more, allowing for the vacation experience to begin as soon as our guests step foot inside the terminal by providing a seamless, comfortable and stylish ship-to-shore experience.”

According to a statement, the new and expanded VIP lounge and passenger check-in area will have exterior views of the ship and Elliott Bay. Other terminal improvements include a modified elevated passenger boarding bridge and a new gangway that will arrive early next year. The brand new state-of-the-art 140-foot gangway will feature incredible floor-to-ceiling transparent walls, immediately connecting guests to views of Elliot Bay.