In December, 2003, the Bayonne Local Redevelopment Authority (BLRA) and Royal Caribbean International announced an agreement to establish a cruise port. Christened the Cape Liberty Cruise Port, the refurbished terminal would serve as the new seasonal homeport for Royal Caribbean's Voyager of the Seas. Design and construction of the cruise port, including a passenger terminal, ship berths, Customs and INS facilities, visitor parking and bus and taxi areas, began in January 2004, and was completed, incredibly, in just eight weeks. The maiden sailing of the Voyager of the Seas was on May 14, 2004. The voyage marked the first time a passenger ship vessel had sailed from New Jersey in almost 40 years.

 

In 2004, Royal Caribbean's Empress of the Seas also sailed regularly from Bayonne. In its inaugural season, over 237,000 passengers safely traveled through Cape Liberty Cruise Port. During 2005, ships included Royal Caribbean's Enchantment of the Seas, Voyager of the Seas, and Celebrity Cruises' Constellation and Zenith.  Passenger volume for 2005 was over 300,000 - the second largest among Northeast and Mid-Atlantic coast ports.

 

And while The Peninsula at Bayonne Harbor had already become a world-class destination for filmmakers and vacationers alike, the future looked even more promising.

Cape Liberty 4
Cape Liberty
Cape Liberty 2

The Peninsula has 430 acres of outdoor space and warehouses, many converted to sound stages, have served as perfect locations for the motion picture industry, with major projects filmed here including Ron Howard's A Beautiful Mind and Steven Spielberg's War of the Worlds.

n 2011, the BLRA sold its property at the Peninsula to the Port Authority of NY/NJ. With the change in property manager, Royal Caribbean remained consistent in delivering terminal operations to the vessel’s which called. Future vessels included Explorer of the Seas, Liberty of the Seas, Celebrity Silhouette and Celebrity Summit.

 

In 2013 Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd, committed to building a purpose built terminal for it’s fleet. The terminal was designed to be capable of servicing any one of RCCL’s multiple brands. Adding features such as digital signage, LED lighting, sleek and innovative design, Cape Liberty Cruise Port became what she is today; a top rated home port and port of call for passenger vessels of all kinds. Opening in 2014, Quantum of the Seas made her inaugural call to the new terminal. It was the largest ship to ever call Cape Liberty Cruise Port home. The next year in 2015, Anthem of the Seas was the new homeport occupant and she sure did get an American inauguration. Who knows what ships are on the horizon for Cape Liberty Cruise Port. It will always be an adventure sailing from Lady Liberty’s front door.