As the season winds down, it was welcome last Saturday to the
newest of the cruise ships seen here this season, the
This ship was the first of two purpose-built vessels to be
built for Oceania Cruises Inc of Miami. It is twice the size
of their other vessels seen here, second-hand units built for
the bankrupted Renaissance Cruises.
The contract for the construction of the pair was awarded to
Fincantieris Ponente Sestri yard at Genoa and was signed on
June 18, 2007. Marina, laid down on March 10, 2009,
was launched on April 4, 2010, and delivered on January 19,
2011, three days before it set out on its maiden voyage.
Of 66.084gt with an overall length of 239.35m, it is a
twin-screw diesel-electric ship with a speed of 20 knots.
It has 13 decks and berths for 1252 passengers in 626
double-occupancy suites and staterooms, and a crew of 780.
Nominal owners are listed as Marina New Build LLC.
Along with the other vessels in the fleet, it is registered
at Majuro, in the Marshall Islands. Sister ship
Riviera was handed over by the builders on April 27,
Oceania Cruise, which prides itself as being a company
that offers luxury, worldwide cruises, was founded in 2002.
The first ships it operated were three of the eight 30,277gt
sister ships built at St Nazaire by Chantiers de l'Atlantique
for failed Renaissance Cruises.
They were chartered from Cruiseinvest, a company that
acquired several of the ships after Renaissance went out of
business. They were acquired later by Oceania.
The first ship in the fleet, built in 1998 as R Two,
was taken over in October 2002 and given the name
Insignia. It was chartered to a French firm in April
2003, and after passing back to Oceania was renamed
In June 2003, it was joined by R One, also dating from
1998, and it seems rather odd that this vessel should also
take the name Insignia. This vessel has been on
charter for two years from April 2012 to Hapag-Lloyd as
The next ship to join the fleet, in November 2005, was
Nautica, built in 2000 as R Five. This vessel made six
visits during the 2008-10 seasons, while Regatta made
three calls last year. These two smaller ships each have 684
Having mentioned Queen Mary's recent circumnavigation
of New Zealand to commemorate a voyage of Captain Cook, the
latest update on the vessel it was built to replace, Queen
Elizabeth 2 (QE2), has come to hand.
Late last year, it was reported that the former Cunarder had
been sold for breaking up in China. Then the good news came
that the ship had been granted a reprieve and would be turned
into a luxury floating hotel.
The perfect location is said to be either Hong Kong or
Singapore. Since it left the Cunard fleet after being retired
following its sale to the Dubai investment company Istithmar
World, QE2 has faced an uncertain future lying idle at Port
But work is in progress preparing the liner for its voyage to
China in about four to five months' time. Seven of its nine
diesel engines are being overhauled along with other
Indications are that the work of converting 950 cabins into
400 deluxe roomsand 200 suites plus other refurbishment, will
cost US$100 million,. work thatcould be carried out by
Guangzhou Wenchong or other shipyards around Shanghai.
Azzura comes back into port this evening after being
anchored outside the harboursince Saturday. The first-time
caller discharged phosphate at Ravensbourne but has had to
wait to load logs because of cruise ship occupancyof the
Beach St berth over the past three days.
A 29,407gt, 52,050dwt bulk carrier, the Hong Kong-registered
vessel isowned by Cello Inc, which is affiliated to Nomikos
Transworld Maritime ofAthens. The vessel was built at
Yokohama by the IHI Marine United yard and entered service on
June 30, 2004.