The Mahogany Bay Cruise Center, on Roatan Island, Honduras, reached a
milestone when it recently welcomed its one millionth cruise passenger.
Located about 40 miles off the north coast of Honduras, Mahogany Bay is a
lush 20-acre waterfront property. The cruise center opened nearly two
I visited the island on the Carnival Liberty when it called there in
mid-December. It was easy to see why the destination is attracting
The $62 million development is a mix of shops, restaurants and
beachfront, and what struck me most was the thoughtful design of its
layout. The pastel-painted, colonial-style buildings are arranged like a
town square, around a central fountain. And since they all are just one
or two stories high they blend into the island’s hilly terrain.
The cruise center also serves as a transportation hub for taxis, rental
cars and tour buses, along with a wide range of shore excursion
Carnival Corp. and Roatan businessman Jerry Hynds developed Mahogany Bay, which has a two-berth cruise terminal.
According to Carnival Cruise Lines, it was Hynds who dreamed up the
center’s “Magical Flying Chair.”
Operating just like a ski lift, the
chair takes visitors from the shopping area to the beach. Along it the
way provides great aerial views of the island and the bay.
I sometimes experience a mild fear of heights so I pondered whether I
ought to try the chair or just meander along the nature trails that also
lead to the beach. Courage won out and I bought my $12 ticket.
Turns out that the magical chair is a lot higher than it looks from
ground level. Thankfully the ride lasted less than 10 minutes.
And even though my ticket was valid for the whole day, I walked the
quiet, curving nature trails back from the beach, chuckling to myself
about how glad I was to be on solid ground.
My butterflies-in-stomach experience didn’t take anything away from my
enjoyment of the facility, which is quite impressive. Agents who get the
chance to visit Mahogany Bay on a fam cruise ought to take it, since
this port is bound to continue growing in popularity, and clients surely
will be asking about it.
Passengers on my cruise raved about Mahogany
Bay -- and our visit was on a rainy day.
The one millionth visitor had arrived aboard the Carnival Dream, which
visits the port year-round, once every other week, on Western Caribbean
itineraries. The Carnival Liberty visits on its biweekly Western
Caribbean cruises until late May.
In addition to Carnival Cruise Lines, vessels from Seabourn, Princess
Cruises, Holland America, Costa Cruises and P&O Cruises, as well as
non-Carnival Corp. brands, have called at the port since it opened in