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Montréal enters peak cruise season with four ships this week

AIDAbella - largest cruise ship to anchor in Montréal
From Oct. 1 to 5, four ships will call at Montréal as the peak cruise season gets under way in the city. Ships ply the St. Lawrence River from May to November, with October as the busiest month.

AIDAbella, the largest ship to anchor in Montréal, was in port Wednesday, with Seven Seas Navigator, Europa and Maasdam to follow. In total, more than 9,300 passengers will transit during this period. Europa returns to Montréal after a 10-year absence.

Montréal's cruise season is scheduled to wrap on Nov. 11 with Hamburg's departure. More than 56,000 domestic and international passengers will have passed through.

'The cruise market is one of great potential and central to our strategic planning for the coming years. We have set ambitious goals, and we are working with various stakeholders to reach them,' said Yves Lalumière, president and ceo of Tourisme Montréal. 'We not only want to attract cruise passengers worldwide to Montréal, but we also want to make Montrealers aware of this unique way of traveling.'

For her part, Sylvie Vachon, president and ceo of the Port of Montéal, commended the 'excellent work' of the Cruise Committee, whose efforts are paying off. She said the 2015 forecast indicates a new cruise record, 'a sign that Montréal has considerable appeal when it comes to the cruise industry.'

Supported by Tourisme Québec, the Montréal Cruise Committee comprises the Montréal Port Authority and Tourisme Montréal, and six other local associations and organizations: Aéroports de Montréal (Montréal Airports), the Old Port of Montréal Corp., Casino de Montréal, the Société de développement commercial du Vieux-Montréal (Old Montréal Business Development Corp.), the Hotel Association of Greater Montréal and the city of Montréal.