The carefully restored Valletta Waterfront sits on the Grand Harbour, below the fortified city and opposite the Three Cities of Vittorioso, Senglea, and Cospicua. Once a series of 19 Baroque bonding warehouses, it is now a leisure complex for locals, tourists, and an annual influx of half a million cruise passengers. The original buildings were commissioned by Manuel Pinto da Fonseca, the Portuguese Grand Master of the Knights of St John between 1741–73 who was also responsible for the Auberge de Castille, one of the most impressive buildings in Valletta and the present offices of the Prime Minister.
Whether you are looking for gourmet restaurants, high-end stores, local events, or simply a breathtaking walk along the promenade, the Valletta Waterfront has it all. Shopping at the Forni Shopping Complex is duty-free at stores selling Maltese glassware and local filigree jewelry and with a choice of 12 restaurants, bars, and clubs, the Waterfront is always jumping at night. Sunday lunchtimes sees special events for kids and concerts and plays are performed within the complex. The last night of the Malta Fireworks Festival is held here in April, the Jazz Festival in July.
For cruise-liner passengers Valletta Waterfront is the gateway to both Malta and the UNESCO World Heritage Site fortified city of Valletta. From here they can hail cabs to any destination on the island or take the new elevator up to Upper Barrakka Gardens and begin their exploration of the city. Ferryboats also cross the Grand Harbour for tours of the Three Cities and horse-drawn karozzini gather here offering city tours.