The committee toured the facilities of the new western Caribbean cruise destination as well as the tourism attractions of adjacent Trujillo, Honduras.
Committee members who visited Honduras' first mainland cruise port included FCCA President Michele Paige, Eric Benedict of Norwegian Cruise Line, Federico Gonzalez-Denton of Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. and Stephen Nielsen of Princess Cruises.
"The cruise industry is very excited about the opportunities that Banana Coast in Trujillo offers as a cruise destination," said Paige. "We found the local government and people of Trujillo to be engaged and supportive of the port development."
Paige noted that the committee characterized the tour program as diverse and professionally executed, and said the port facilities are fully equipped, well laid-out and Americans with Disabilities Act–compliant, offering appealing retail, restaurants and bars; beach access and designated areas for taxis and tour vehicles.
Banana Coast has diverse retail shopping and 10 acres of beachfront right in the colonial town of Trujillo, which was established in 1525. Diverse shore excursions feature the region’s Spanish colonial heritage and lush tropical setting with cultural, historical, soft-adventure and eco-tour offerings.
Holland America Line was the first cruise company to commit to a series of port calls at Banana Coast, beginning in November 2014. Luxury operator Silversea Cruises has slated calls in December 2014 and March 2015, and Oceania Cruises also is scheduled to call in March 2015.
The nonprofit Florida-Caribbean Cruise Association is composed of 15 cruise lines calling at Caribbean ports. The organization coordinates dialogue between Caribbean destinations and regional businesses and the cruise industry.