Imperium to start Dubai operations


Imperium Cruises, a division of UK-based Imperium Holdings, has announced plans to base two ships in Dubai this year, operating itineraries to the Red Sea and Indian Ocean from the Arabian Gulf port.

According to chief executive officer, Kaiser Helman, the new operation will make Dubai a regional cruise hub, and eventually bring in between 120,000 and 150,000 passengers annually through the Dubai Cruise Terminal.

"We have been researching this project for nearly two years, and identified a gap in the cruise market for ships to homeport in Dubai on a year-round basis," he said.

Two ships, formerly part of the defunct Renaissance fleet, have been chartered from Cruiseinvest - the first, renamed The White Goddess, will arrive in Dubai in May prior to launch of cruises to Egypt in June.

The second, The Goddess Nayna, is scheduled for a refit in October 2002 and will then begin cruises from Dubai to the Indian Ocean and East Africa in late November.