Port of Halifax Celebrates Longstanding Relationship with Holland America Line

August 24, 2023, Halifax, NS – The Port of Halifax will host a shoreside ceremony on Monday, August 28, 2023, to celebrate the longstanding relationship with Holland America Line. The celebration will honour the 150th Anniversary of Holland America Line and 30 years of Holland America Line cruise ship calls at the Port of Halifax. A welcome celebration will feature ceremonial drumming by the Mi’kmaw Native Friendship Centre and a farewell performance by the 78th Highlanders.

Following a blessing by Mi’kmaw Elder Charlotte Bernard, a ceremony will be held in front of the Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21 where Halifax Port Authority President and CEO Captain Allan Gray will present Captain Bart Vaartjes of the Holland America Line Zuiderdam with a commemorative plaque. Also taking part will be Sam Austin, Deputy Mayor of Halifax, Marie Chapman, CEO of the Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21, and representatives from Discover Halifax, Tourism Nova Scotia, Parks Canada, and the Halifax Citadel Society.

“Holland America Line has played an important role in the development of Halifax as a premiere cruise destination over the past three decades,” said Captain Allan Gray, President and CEO of the Halifax Port Authority. “We are proud to celebrate this milestone with Holland America Line and look forward to building our partnership for many years to come.”

“As we celebrate our 150th anniversary, we’re pleased to mark the occasion with our friends at the Port of Halifax, with whom we share a rich history. When Pier 21 began operations in 1928, Holland America Line’s ship Nieuw Amsterdam I was the first to arrive with passengers,” said Gus Antorcha, President, Holland America Line. “Since then, Halifax has played a role in the success of Holland America Line, serving as a gateway to Canada and beyond for countless travelers. We are honored to present the Port of Halifax with a plaque that is a statement of how much we value a partnership that we have enjoyed for decades.”

Members of the media are invited to attend the ceremony and board the vessel. For those intending to come aboard, please complete this electronic form before 3:00 p.m. ADT Friday, August 25, 2023. For those requiring shoreside access, please contact Emily Richardson ([email protected]).

About the Port of Halifax:

The Port of Halifax meets the needs of today’s shipping, cargo and cruise operations, while building for the future. Initiatives are underway to enhance the flow of goods and people through the Port of Halifax, improve efficiency and identify future opportunities.


Emily Richardson
Communications Coordinator
Halifax Port Authority
Ph. (902) 229-8011
[email protected]