A couple weeks shy of it’s opening date, Amber Cove, the new port in the Dominican Republic, and $85 million venture is rapidly coming together. This will be the first time since the 80’s that a cruise ship will dock on the Amber Coast of Puerto Plata, named for its abundance of the translucent amber mines off the coast. In fact, rumor has it that there will be an amber art wall installation that will feature an embedded caimen for travelers viewing pleasure as they arrive at port.
What To Expect
The first ship set to arrive at Amber Cove will dock on Oct. 6th, 2015. This 25-acre port, being chiefly developed by Carnival Corp. will see about 350,000 guests next year from eight Carnival Cruise Lines: Carnival Cruise Line, Princess Cruises, Holland America Line, Cunard Line, Costa Cruises, AIDA, P&O Cruises, and their newest and most unique social-impact line: fathom.
The Caribbean’s newest port has a 1,280-foot pier, a bus and taxi station, cabanas, and of course a slew of bars, restaurants and shops for excited new travelers. Developers are putting the final touches on landscapes and the interiors of buildings. The pier is capable of handling two of the largest ships in the Carnival family at once, but will initially only dock one ship at a time.
While there will be no beach access, there is a large pool and Carnival will offer multiple beach excursions. There will be a total of 44 tours offered to vacationers, with something for everyone. The developed tours will include a wide variety of outings from adventure ziplining to cave exploration, scuba diving and ATV tours.
Vice president of tour operations at Carnival, Amilcar Cascais said he expects upwards of 66% of guests to participate in these excursions, mainly because they will be curious about the new destination. Excursion participation is typically less than that at 30-50% participation.
What the Locals are Saying
Puerto Plata, on the northern coast of the D.R. has about 300,000 residents. It’s been a five year project, and these locals are excited to see the project finally come to fruition. Vice minister of tourism for the Dominican Republic said the country’s president has been to the site recently to check on progress and show support. “The future of Puerto Plata is this project,” Almonte said.
The new port is expected to provide about 430 local jobs, adding generously to the economy, in an area of the D.R. that is relatively low on the tourism scale. It also allows travelers to see a new part of the Dominican Republic, a scenic location full of isolated beaches, the Caribbean’s only mountain cable car and a popular destination for kite surfers.
The area surrounding the new Amber Cove was one of the locations used to shoot the 1993 film Jurassic Park.