The Manhattan Cruise Terminal remains the primary home port for trans-Atlantic crossings from Europe. Located on Piers 84 to 94 on Manhattan's West Side (12th Ave & W 55th St), the Manhattan Cruise Terminal is the fourth busiest cruise terminal in the United States.
The Manhattan Cruise Terminal had its start as the New York City Passenger Ship Terminal in the 1930s, when Mayor LaGuardia built long, modern finger piers out into the Hudson along Manhattan’s west side. For much of the early twentieth century, a half dozen of the world’s greatest passenger ships docked side by side from Piers 84 to 94—a stretch that became known as Luxury Liner Row—starting with the Normandie in 1935, followed by the Queen Mary the following year and the Queen Elizabeth after the outbreak of World War II. During the war, thousands of GI’s embarked on the latter two ships for the European theater of war—16,683 at once when the Queen Mary departed from Pier 90 in July 1943.
Kings, queens and Hollywood royalty enjoyed luxurious post-war cruises, departing from the Terminal in great numbers. Despite the advent of affordable air travel in the 1950s, cruising enjoyed a resurgence of popularity in the 1960s, with Bermuda as a popular destination. Following renovation of the piers in 1970, the Terminal has served the expanding cruise travel business, and continued its historical role of providing embarkation for all transatlantic crossings.
In 2004, to secure its position as a first-class passenger terminal, the City of New York undertook a program of $200 million in capital investment at the New York Cruise Terminal. The new terminals will include modern adjustable gangways and expanded pier aprons to load and unload passengers and supplies with greater speed, comfort and efficiency. The redeveloped terminals will also segregate embarking and disembarking passengers onto separate levels, allowing for more efficient use of passenger space and reducing congestion.
From Buses: Passengers arrive at the street level of the pier where their cruise vessel is berthed. Buses will park in slots at the front of the pier. Passengers can access the second-level Customs Hall via either of two large passenger elevators or the escalators at the street entrance of the piers. Baggage will be moved directly from buses to the vessel.
From Limousines: Passengers will be dropped off by arriving limousines in the receiving area at street level — directly in front of the pier where their cruise vessel is berthed. Access the Customs Hall by using either of the two passenger elevators at the head of each pier, or use the escalator on the south side of the entrance area. Baggage will be received by porters directly from their limousine and moved to the vessel.
From Taxis: Passengers arriving by taxi will be driven up the 54th Street Viaduct Ramp to the receiving area adjacent to their cruise vessel's berth. Their baggage will be received there by porters and taken to the vessel.
From Private Vehicles: Passengers arriving by private vehicle should drive up the Viaduct Ramp to the receiving area adjacent to their cruise vessel's berth. Signs identifying the vessel are posted on pillars nearest the proper berth. Baggage will be received there by porters and taken directly to the vessel.
All passengers should then proceed to complete the boarding process at the embarkation desks of the cruise line, which are positioned inside the customs hall.
Upon Returning From The Cruise: Passengers will be directed to the baggage hall where baggage will have been positioned by porters under appropriate signs coded by letter, cabin number or color, depending on the system followed by the cruise line. After retrieving your bags, proceed past the customs inspector for customs declaration. You may be assisted by a porter according to your preference.
Bus and Limousine Passengers: Descend to street level via two elevators or the escalator located at the far end of the lobby.
Taxi Passengers: Exit the lobby area with your baggage onto the second-level viaduct; claim a numbered ticket from the taxi dispatcher and await taxi service on the sidewalk queue stripe.
Private Vehicle Passengers: Exit the lobby area with your baggage onto the viaduct to await the driver in your party, who should proceed to the rooftop parking area to pick up your car. The driver must exit the rooftop (third level) to the ramp at the north end of the roof, descend to mid-level and pick up the others in his or her party who have remained at the disembarkation pier with the baggage.
Exit from the Terminal is via the ramp to the street at the south end of the mid-level. Parking
Parking is conveniently located above each of the piers. Drive up the Viaduct Ramp at 55th Street to the receiving area adjacent to their cruise vessel's berth.
Parking Rates Effective 4/1/08 Daily rate (up to 10 hours) for drop offs/visitors: $25.00
Cruise parking: $30.00 per night Cruises from 10 to 30 nights: $300.00
Please Note: Taxes are included in the rates. Payment accepted in cash, visa and master card.
Space is subject to availability and is provided to cruise parkers on a first come, first serve basis. For Ports America (Terminal Operator) Parking Information, call (212) 641-4454. Additional parking lots are located at 59th Street.
Manhattan Cruise Terminal is located in the Hell's Kitchen neighborhood of Manhattan. Known as "Clinton" by the municipal government and devotees of former mayor DeWitt Clinton and as "Hell's Kitchen" by Daredevil and everyone else, this area of Midtown West is currently experiencing rapid (re)development. Spanning roughly from West 34th to 59th Streets and from 8th Avenue to the Hudson River, it still has a rough-and-tumble character when compared with other more defined neighborhoods in Manhattan. Once a bastion of poor and working-class Irish Americans, over the last decade the neighborhood has undergone tremendous gentrification as a result of its proximity to Midtown's many office buildings. Long-time residents, many of whom enjoyed reasonable rents and decent-sized apartments, are finding that conversion of rent-controlled and -stabilized apartments, coupled with the general building boom and strong economy, brought quick change to this formerly sleepy area. Given the strange, even Byzantine zoning regulations in New York, it’s not unusual to see a tiny brownstone, a remnant of another era, adjacent to or near a brand-new high-rise rental or condominium building. While the wholesome new Theater District has resulted in lower crime rates and decreased the area’s quality-of-life problems such as prostitution, urban transformation for some means a loss of the gritty qualities of this neighborhood for others. While you'll find thousands of new apartments in Hell's Kitchen west of Ninth Avenue, you'll also find dozens of eclectic and interesting restaurants to boot. Some of our favorites include the terrific Daisy May's BBQ on Eleventh Avenue; the German cuisine of Hallo Berlin and nearby Queen of Sheba featuring great Ethiopian cuisine on Tenth Avenue; French patisserie La Bergamote on West 42nd Street; Bali Nusa Indah on Ninth Avenue has intriguing Indonesian dishes; the Film Center Café for high-powered American diner-style dishes; and the many Thai places dotting Ninth Avenue too numerous to mention. Hotels in Hell's Kitchen include a number of budget places the further west you go such as The 414 Hotel and the Skyline. While there are dozens of hotels on Eighth Avenue and throughout the Theater District on Eighth Avenue and Broadway, Hell's Kitchen enjoys a somewhat more relaxed pace than the frenetic hubbub you'll find just two avenues further east. Check out the neighborhood's weekly Chelsea-Clinton News, a great local publication that’s been around longer than the former U.S. President’s daughter!
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