Star Cruises teamed up with Hong Kong property developers to bid for the proposed Kai Tak cruise terminal project, vowing to make the Hong Kong into a major port of call and the top cruise destination in Asia.

On Jan. 7, Star said that it formed a consortium with Sun Hung Kai Properties, VXL Capital and Nan Fung Development to develop a new cruise terminal at a site that formerly was an airport and closed in 1998.

In late 2006, Hong Kong's Dept. of Economic Development and Labor announced that it would accept bids to develop a new cruise terminal within a project that would include reconstruction of the sites existing seawall and development of two alongside berths which would be able to accommodate large cruise vessels.

Hong Kong said at that time that the new cruise terminal and tourism-related facilities would be built on approximately 18 acres at the southern end of the former runway, and the government would offer land adjacent to the cruise terminal for the development of tourism-related facilities, such as hotels, shopping malls and conference facilities.

The development cost for the berthing and supporting facilities essential for the operation of a cruise terminal at Kai Tak was estimated to be $307.7 million.

Star, owners of Asian cruise brand Star Cruises and 50% owner of NCL Corp., said it has experience building and operating a passenger cruise terminal, as it has with Port Klang in Malaysia.

To contact reporter Johanna Jainchill, send e-mail to [email protected].

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