The Maasdam opens the cruise season this Saturday at the Port of Montreal

MONTREAL, May 28 /CNW Telbec/ - Starting this Saturday, May 29, Montrealers and tourists will be able to admire the Maasdam, the first cruise ship of the 2010 season to dock in Montreal. The Maasdam will arrive around 7 a.m. and will be moored at Alexandra Pier, opposite Pointe-à-Callière Museum at the bottom of St-François-Xavier Street.

At 219 metres long and 30 metres wide, this Holland America Line ship can accommodate 1,266 passengers and more than 550 crew members. The Maasdam will make the Montreal - Boston and Boston - Montreal runs eight times over the course of the season, which wraps up at the end of October. The Maasdam will leave late Saturday afternoon for Quebec City, Charlottetown, Sydney, Halifax, Bar Harbor and Boston.

The 2010 season promises to be busy with 27 international cruises and 13 cruises between Montreal and the Magdalen Islands. One of the highlights will be the arrival on September 23 and October 13 of the Aida Luna, the largest cruise ship ever welcomed at the Port of Montreal. This ship from the German cruise line Aida Cruises is 252 metres long and can accommodate up to 2,500 passengers and crew.

The last weekend of September will be especially lively at the Iberville Passenger Terminal, as no less than four cruise ships will be there at the same time.

Information on cruise ship arrivals and departures is available on the Montreal Port Authority website at

    About the Port of Montreal

Operated by the Montreal Port Authority (MPA), the Port of Montreal is an important diversified transshipment centre that handles all types of goods - non-containerized cargo, liquid bulk and dry bulk - it is a leading container port served by 7 of the 10 largest container shipping lines in the world. Close to 1,250,000 TEUs (twenty-foot equivalent units) were handled at the Port of Montreal in 2009, representing 11,266,000 tonnes of cargo.

The Port also handled 7,773,000 tonnes of liquid bulk, 2,898,000 tonnes of dry bulk, and 2, 419,000 tonnes of grain in 2009.

The Port of Montreal owns its own rail network, operated directly on the piers. It is connected to the two nationwide railways and a highway system. The Port also operates its own grain terminal and a marine passenger terminal that welcomed 47,534 passengers and crew members in 2009. All the other terminals are operated by private stevedoring firms. Port activity supports 18,200 jobs and generates $1.5 billion in economic spin-offs per year.

/NOTE TO PHOTO EDITORS: A photo accompanying this release is available at Images are free to accredited members of the media/

SOURCE Montreal Port Authority

For further information: For further information: Jean-Paul Lejeune, Director of Communications, (514) 283-7050, Fax: (514) 283-0829,;

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