Louis Cruises India chooses Kochi as home port


Thiruvananthapuram : Louis Cruises India, a subsidiary of one of the world’s leading cruise operators Louis Cruises, launched its operations in India with Kochi as its home port.

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Louis Cruises India managing director Oneil Khosa has signed an agreement with Kerala Tourism Director M. Sivasankar in the presence of State Tourism Minister Kodiyeri Balakrishnan to use the Cochin Port for five years.

The Louis Group, a leading Europe-based tour operator, has 20 luxury hotels in Greece and Cyprus, besides a fleet of 12 cruise ships.

After the signing, Balakrishnan said the Kochi port was emerging as a major destination for cruise tourism.

“Kochi was a natural choice for Louis Cruises not just because it has all potential of an emerging cruise hub but also of the positive approach of the state government towards tourism,” the minister said.

“Nearly 60,000 travellers are expected to embark on their voyage from Kochi, which would bring more economic activity besides new jobs for the local community.”

Louis Cruises will operate the cruise ship MV Aquamarine from Kochi from December, with a capacity of 1,200 passengers.

The present itineraries that have been announced include Kochi-Maldives-Kochi, Kochi-Colombo-Kochi and also a one-night high sea sailing itinerary.

According to Khosa, unlike Europeans and Americans who prefer long voyages, domestic travellers like short sailing.

“Indian’s are not generally inclined towards long sailing and a two to three day package would be ideal. The package will include Indian and European theme entertainment, cuisine and also duty free shopping,” said Khosa.