Circle Line Downtown
is a sightseeing harbor cruise company that
operates out of Pier 16, South Street Seaport
. The company name is
Circle Line Harbor Cruises, LLC which is a wholly own subsidiary of
Circle Line Statue of Liberty.
Circle Line Downtown was established by President J.B. Meyer, third generation owner and operator of the family that founded the company and Circle Line
brand. In 1953, Frank Barry, Gerald O'Driscoll, Helen Mitchell, William Moran, and Frank Clair founded Circle Line, the nautical sightseeing operation, providing cruises which circled Manhattan. The company's fleet was then a collection of modified craft, including surplus landing crafts from World War II, retired Coast Guard
cutters, and private yachts.
Operating as Circle Line-Statue of Liberty Ferry, Inc., this offshoot was contracted by the United States Department of Interior National Park Service to provide exclusive ferry service to both Liberty Island and Ellis Island in 1954.
In 1982, the company collectively known as Circle Line split into two separate entities, Circle Line Sightseeing Cruise and Circle Line-Statue of Liberty Ferry, Inc. Meyer and Moran soon came to head Statue of Liberty Ferry. Operating out of Battery Park, Circle Line-Statue of Liberty Ferry, Inc. ran service to Liberty and Ellis Islands until 2008.
After the September 11, 2001 attacks, Meyer and Moran, sought to lend a hand in the revitalization of lower Manhattan. The two founded Circle Line Harbor Cruises, LLC., known in the global tourism community as Circle Line Downtown in 2004.
- ZEPHYR Seaport Liberty Cruise is a one hour sightseeing cruise
on board a luxury yacht that sails past many New York landmarks
including the Statue of Liberty, the Empire State Building,
the Chrysler Building and the Brooklyn Bridge.
- SHARK Speedboat Thrill Ride is a thirty minute speedboat thrill
ride along the New York Harbor.
Circle Line Downtown also offers a variety of specialty cruises that include:
- Happy Hour on the Harbor is a weekly ninety minute happy hour
cruise that sails along the New York Harbor.
- Friday Night Karaoke Cruise began in 2007 on board the
ZEPHYR which accommodates 250 people
and provides the opportunity for people to sing, dance, drink all
while sailing past New York's famous skyline.
- Saturday Night Dance Cruise is a two and a half hour themed
harbor cruise on board their ship the ZEPHYR that provides a
large dance floor.
- Sunset Hidden Harbor Tour explores the largest and busiest
maritime port on the Eastern seaboard in a 2-hour narrated tour aboard
The cruise visits spots on the waterfront that are hidden from normal
view and can only be seen from the water.
The New York City Waterfalls
In 2008 the Public Art Fund
selected Circle Line Downtown to
provide the official water tour for the "New York City Waterfalls
artist Olafur Eliasson
The $15 million project will be the biggest public art installation
since 2005's "the Gates