CRUISE POS­SI­BIL­I­TIES EXPANDING

Ex­pe­di­tion com­pany com­ing to Syd­ney

Cape Breton Post - - Front Page - BY NANCY KING nk­ing@cb­post.com

Ex­pe­di­tion cruise com­pany com­ing to Syd­ney.

With the open­ing of a sec­ond berth at the port of Syd­ney, it will be­come the home port for an ex­pe­di­tion cruise com­pany, its man­ag­ing di­rec­tor says.

Syd­ney is sit­u­ated per­fectly to be a gate­way for the busi­ness, Andrew Prossin of One Ocean Ex­pe­di­tions said in an in­ter­view Fri­day.

The Westmount na­tive was one of the speak­ers at this week’s Port Days in Syd­ney. Prossin says the com­pany has been build­ing its cruise op­er­a­tion in Cape Bre­ton and has five cruises cur­rently sched­uled to start or end in Cape Bre­ton, mostly de­part­ing from Louis­bourg and also vis­it­ing com­mu­ni­ties such as English­town, In­ver­ness and In­go­nish.

One Ocean also has port calls where they do plan­ning for Arc­tic and Antarc­tic op­er­a­tions, where the ships come into port twice a year to spend a hand­ful of days pre­par­ing to be at sea or in re­mote ports for ex­tended pe­ri­ods of time. Prossin es­ti­mated the com­pany spent about $5 mil­lion in Hal­i­fax last year that they are look­ing to move to Syd­ney.

“We fill the stor­age rooms and re­frig­er­a­tors with food and fill the fuel tanks with fuel and buy sup­plies and tools and blan­kets and tele­vi­sions and what­ever it is we need and get mi­nor re­pairs done,” Prossin said.

“It’s one to come here and bring some tourists and have them come off and buy some sandwiches and t-shirts and stuff and do the tours, but it’s quite another thing to do all that lo­gis­tics prepa­ra­tion … that’s where you’re go­ing to see real spinoff ef­fects,” he said.

One Ocean’s fleet is grow­ing, Prossin said, adding they are cur­rently in dis­cus­sions about ac­quir­ing some new ves­sels.

The com­pany has been con­sid­er­ing Syd­ney for a few years, but the ad­di­tion of a sec­ond port berth is what is re­ally al­low­ing for the shift, he said. He said he be­lieves there is an emerg­ing ex­pe­di­tion cruise in­dus­try run­ning ves­sels north­ward that will also be look­ing at Syd­ney.

“It’s slated to have fuel and wa­ter, et cetera, et cetera, and that’s re­ally the crit­i­cal thing, you need to be able to take fuel while tied at the dock,” Prossin said.

On the ex­pe­di­tion cruise side, they are plan­ning to launch a golf cruise call­ing at the is­land’s ma­jor golf at­trac­tions in­clud­ing High­lands Links, Cabot Cliffs and Cabot Links. Prossin said he doesn’t think ex­pe­di­tion golf­ing has been done be­fore.

“We’ve got tremen­dous in­ter­est in that from all over the world,” he said.

They plan to take that con­cept to other ar­eas.

One Ocean em­ploys more than 30 peo­ple full time, with of­fices in Squamish, B.C., Lon­don, English and Syd­ney, Aus­tralia. Its po­lar ex­pe­di­tion ves­sels were in­volved in the dis­cov­ery of HMS Ere­bis in 2014.

Prossin said his com­pany is the only cruise op­er­a­tor to start and end voy­ages in Cape Bre­ton and have fully do­mes­tic cruises. He said they fo­cus on buy­ing Cana­dian where pos­si­ble.

One Ocean Ex­pe­di­tions’ east coast cruises be­gin July 1 in Louis­bourg.

SUB­MIT­TED PHOTO

This is one of the ves­sels owned by One Ocean Ex­pe­di­tions. The com­pany’s gen­eral man­ager said they in­tend to make Syd­ney their home port once the sec­ond port berth is com­pleted.

Prossin

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