Hambantota International Port has welcomed Cordelia Cruises’ Empress.
The port welcomed about 1,600 guests from the ship, as they made their inaugural visit at the port, arranged by Advantis.
The ship embarked on its inaugural sailing to Sri Lanka from the Port of Chennai on June 5, 2023.
Disembarking guests were garlanded with flowers and treated to a warm Sri Lankan welcome accompanied by Kandyan dancers and traditional drummers.
“Our partnership with Advantis is the first step in positioning both Sri Lanka and India as premier destinations for discerning travelers across South Asia. By seamlessly integrating these unique and diverse holiday destinations, we aim to chart new horizons for tourists and stimulate economic growth for both nations,” Cordelia Cruises President and CEO Jurgen Bailom stated.
“We are delighted to welcome Cordelia Cruises and embrace a completely new segment of luxury cruise tourists. Today marks a significant milestone in our efforts to revitalize and unlock substantial commercial opportunities for the tourism value chain, as well as capitalize on our island’s vast untapped potential as a global hotspot for cruises,” said Hayleys Group Chairman and Chief Executive Mohan Pandithage.
Advantis and Cordelia Cruises will combine their expertise and resources in order to unlock the full potential of Sri Lanka and position the country as a top destination for luxury travelers.
Advantis Managing Director, Ruwan Waidyaratne said: “As an island nation, Sri Lanka has attracted maritime trade and travel for centuries. However, in the modern age, our nation is yet to leverage its natural advantages to the best of our ability.
Through our alliance with Cordelia Cruises, we are able to facilitate the first-ever cruise sailing operation around the island, offering a remarkable opportunity for travelers to explore the rich heritage, breathtaking natural beauty, and vibrant cultural diversity of Sri Lanka. We look forward to working in close partnership with the Cordelia team to attract at least 80,000 visitors within the next four months alone.”