Carnival Corp has officially opened its second cruise terminal at Barcelona.
During the ceremony, the company revealed that Helix cruise centre will be the name of its new 12,500 sq m terminal. Costing over €46 mill, the Helix terminal and the company’s existing terminal at the port represent Carnival Corp’s largest combined terminal investment in Europe.
Designed by Catalan architects Batlle i Roig Arquitectura, the company’s latest cruise terminal is claimed to reflect modern and graceful architectural style with straight lines, creating a contemporary and comfortable guest environment designed to enhance the embarkation and disembarkation process for cruise guests.
Also making its debut shortly will be the port’s first public parking facility, providing guests embarking on cruises with access to nearly 300 parking spaces. In addition, the Helix terminal will accommodate Carnival Corp’s new class of ‘green’ cruise ships that will be fully powered by LNG.
“After years of working closely with our extraordinary partners in Barcelona, including the port, its support network of local businesses and the city, we are absolutely thrilled to introduce our world-class Helix cruise centre to welcome guests from around the world to Europe’s best-loved cruise port and to Barcelona, one of the world’s greatest cities and regions,” said Giora Israel, Carnival Corp’s senior vice president of global ports and destination development. “As the world’s largest cruise company with more than 100 ships that sail to over 700 destinations across the globe, our goal is to provide our guests with extraordinary vacations, and we are confident that our new terminal will help us enhance the overall experience for our guests.
“The terminal stands as a tribute to the remarkable appeal of Barcelona and the entire country as one of the world’s most beautiful, vibrant and compelling destinations. We are proud of the work that has been accomplished together with the port, city, government, business and community. We now look forward to working with the port of Barcelona and its community partners to make the cruise terminal a highly efficient and customer-friendly operation,” he said.
“We have a long history of working with Carnival Corporation and its cruise line brands,” said Sixte Cambra, Port of Barcelona president. “We appreciate their strong commitment to our great port, city and region, and we are excited about the new Helix cruise centre, which is already earning rave reviews as one of the world’s most spectacular cruise terminals.
“We appreciated the opportunity to work closely with Carnival Corporation. In every aspect, and particularly in its innovative and sustainable approach, this is a world-class cruise terminal that further enhances our reputation as one of the best ports in the world,” he said.
The Helix cruise centre is located at Adossat wharf. Eight Carnival Corp brands – AIDA Cruises, Carnival Cruise Line, Costa Cruises, Cunard, Holland America Line, Princess Cruises, Seabourn and P&O Cruises (UK) – visit Barcelona throughout the year, with six of those eight brands operating full or partial turnarounds in Barcelona this year.
Carnival Corp expects to accommodate over one million passenger movements at the port in 2018, with 289 calls by 38 different ships.
The deployment of LNG-fuelled ships to the port supports the ‘Air Quality Improvement Plan’ proposed by the Port of Barcelona in November, 2016 to effectively reduce emissions from port activities.
Last year, Barcelona became the first cruise port in the Mediterranean to add facilities to supply cruise ships with LNG. In total, Carnival Corp is currently building nine fully LNG-powered cruise ships across four of its global cruise brands.
In addition to the use of LNG, the company has made exhaust gas cleaning systems (EGCS) highly functional in the small confines of a cruise ship. Currently, Carnival Corp has more than 60% of its fleet fitted with the systems, which significantly improve air emissions by reducing sulfur compounds and particulate matter from exhaust.
Further, about 40% of the fleet was equipped with cold ironing capabilities by the end of last year, thus enabling ships to use an alternative power source in port where available.