After many months of negotiations, Galveston has finalized a deal for a fourth cruise terminal that will become the Texas home for MSC Cruises.
The Galveston Wharves confirmed details of a $100 million cruise terminal and a $42 million parking garage it will develop for the cruise line at Pier 16.
The 5,600-guest MSC Seascape will homeport at the new terminal from late 2025. The project entails converting a cargo warehouse into a 165,000-square-foot passenger terminal. The development will be funded through port cash reserves and revenue bonds.
20-year Agreement Inked
The parties signed an initial 20-year deal with four additional 5-year extension options. The Port of Galveston will become MSC’s fourth home port in the US. The Port forecasts an extra 925 jobs will be created.
“We’re excited about this mutually beneficial public-private partnership. It also elevates our status as a top U.S. cruise home port and moves us up to the eighth largest cruise port in the global market,” said Rodger Rees, Galveston Wharves port director and CEO.
MSC to start Galveston sailings in 2025
MSC Cruises has already opened sales for its planned 2025 cruises from Galveston with MSC Seascape. It will operate year-round seven-night sailings to the Caribbean. Planned port calls include Costa Maya and Cozumel, Mexico, and Roatan.
“A great cruise starts with a top-notch terminal, and we’re excited to partner with the Galveston Wharves. We think it’s important to support the communities we serve and look forward to working with leaders in Galveston to make this project a reality,” said Rubén A. Rodríguez, President of MSC Cruises USA.
The Port of Galveston welcomed 1.49 million cruise passengers in 2023, a 43% year-over-year increase. Port CEO Rees revealed it has berth reservations for 388 sailings this year with capacity for more than 1.6 million cruise passengers.