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Lloyds Lauds Louis/Adios AQUAMARINE!

Posted on Thursday, December 16, 2010 by

Louis Cruises' MV AQUAMARINE (ex NORDIC PRINCE) at Santorini. Photo and copyright Peter Knego 2010.

December 15: Lloyds List named Louis Cruises 2010’s “Greek Passenger Line of the Year” in its annual Greek Shipping Awards ceremony, attended by the Greek Shipping Minister and members of the Greek shipping community. Louis Loizou, Executive Director of the Louis Group accepted the award for his father, Costakis Loizou, the line’s Executive Chairman. The Louis Group was founded in 1935 in Cyprus, eventually becoming its largest tourism entity with a chain of hotels, tour outfits and, in more recent years, Louis Cruises, which operates seven ships, including: LOUIS MAJESTY (ex ROYAL MAJESTY, NORWEGIAN MAJESTY), ORIENT QUEEN (ex STARWARD), LOUIS CRISTAL (ex LEEWARD), CORAL (ex CUNARD ADVENTURER), THOMSON DESTINY (ex SONG OF AMERICA), THOMSON SPIRIT (ex NOORDAM) and THE CALYPSO (ex CANGURO VERDE).

In its continuing fleet renewal, Louis has just announced the sale of the 1971-built MV AQUAMARINE (ex NORDIC PRINCE), to Mexican operator Corporacion De Cruceros Nacionales who have renamed her OCEAN STAR PACIFIC.   Other Louis vessels on the sales list include the THE EMERALD (ex SANTA ROSA) and SAPPHIRE (ex ITALIA).

15 Responses to Lloyds Lauds Louis/Adios AQUAMARINE!

  1. Glenn L.

    December 17, 2010 at 3:16 am

    I wonder if Norwegian Dream will be part of the renewed fleet or will she go into her third year of layup. Aquamarine is such a classic too bad we can’t have her in New York for the Bermuda run that she’s all too familiar with.

  2. Kenneth Eden

    December 17, 2010 at 4:15 am

    In many ways Louis Cruises seems to be following the path of a former Greek passenger cruise giant, Chandris.

    Chandris for many years lavished older ships with kind attention, while offering a moderately priced cruise.

    Th company changed its name to Chandris Fantasy Cruises, whereby the pricing for the cruises became surprsingly low, yet, certain degrees of luxe were maintained, even a proper dress code at night.

    Later, Candris held on to the Fantasy ships, and founded Celebrity Cruises, which at the time was a state of the art , upscale cruise product, using one old ship, that became the Meridien, and soon brand new ships were built expressly for Celebrity, under Chandris ownership. Royal Caribbean owns what was the Chandris Celebrity product, Chandris passenger cruise operations have gone by the wayside. The X on Celebrity ships stand for Chandris, the Greek letter CHI,.

    I took a cruise on the OLD The Victoria. Chandris added the “The” to the ships name.

    What a lovely old, yet, thoroughly modern little ship she was. The ship dated back to the 1920’s, and under extensive rebuilding, the litle ship was as modern as any new ship of her time. Our stateroom even had a veranda, one of four on the ship. That was very rare on a ship, even for the early 1980’s. The cruise was 10 days, Caribbean, and cost $700.00, top cabin WITH air from Boston the San Juan, R/T. . I must point out that the extensive rebuilding of The Victoria took place by Incres Line, and in her day, thie ship was a trend setter for what has evolved as the definitive cruise ship.

    I would love to see Louis bring a ship into the Caribbean for I would enjoy giving them a try.

    Peter has had first hand experience with Louis, and he has noted that the cruise lines delivers a nice product.

  3. Kenneth Eden

    December 17, 2010 at 4:35 am

    Another oldie but goody I had the priviledge to sail in was the Italia, known as the Ocean Islander, when she was owned by Ocean cruise Line, back in 1985.

    Again, another Caribbean this time out of Barbados, round trip, calling at the lesser visited islands.

    OCL had a very short tenure at sea, perhaps only 5/6 years. They had two ships, the Ocean Islander, and the Ocean Princes, a very small ship, about 5400 – 5600 tons, and lacked public rooms due to her size. I took Ocean Princess NOT to be confused with Princess Cruises, on a Orinoco River cruise, and it was wonderful, even though the ship had little going for it. I believe the little ship is sailing off Africa on expedition cruises, under another name.

  4. anthony nicholas

    December 17, 2010 at 7:44 am

    The writing has probably been on the wall for this ship since her bruited Indian cruise season failed last year. Still, I’m glad she’s been sold for future service. I saw her in Kusadasi back in September, when she was docked next to my ship Crystal Serenity, and she has a truly classic profile and a beautiful stance.

    It says a lot for this pioneering design that two of the original three ships are still in profitable service. They may lack all the perceived ‘bells and whistles’ of the modern mega ships, but they have introduced countless thousands to the gentle art of cruising over the years. I, for one, wish this stately ship much success in her latest incarnation.

  5. John Cant

    December 17, 2010 at 1:37 pm

    While working for Costa Line, I cruised aboard the ITALIA, then under charter to Costa, a beautiful little ship. I hope that she will survive. Does anyone remember the FLAVIA of Costa Line, running from Miami to Nassau on 3 and 4 day cruises? She was the former Media or Parthia of Cunard Line, one of the many Costa Line ships having been built for other shipping companies. Those were the good old days of ships of about 20,000 tons carrying 600 to 700 passengers, with proper dress code, not like today’s Jeans and Tshirt crowd.

  6. Kenneth Eden

    December 18, 2010 at 4:31 am

    Yes John the Italia was a beautiful ship, when I sailed her with Ocean Cruise Line.

    The Flavia! Wow, that is a blast from the past, and I remember her, not from sailing her, but from seeing her year after year docked in Nassau. I sailed the Enrico-C out of Genoa, an old sea dog of a ship
    I have the fondest memories of the ship, the crew and the food.

    The Itakia was a major catalist for the then new Princess cruises, as they chartered the Itlaia, renamed her Princess Italia, and thus a cruise legend was formed.

  7. John Cant

    December 18, 2010 at 4:44 pm

    Kenneth: I sailed on the Enrico C from Venice through the Greek Islands in the 70’s. She was the former Provence, one of the many ships that Costa Line bought from previous owners. When I worked for them they only operated two of their own ships, the Federico C and the Eugenio C. The Eugenio C was built to the same design as the Oceanic.She was a beauty and operated on the emigrant trade from Italy to South America. Those were the days when the entire crew were Italian, but once in a while they would go on strike while the ship was at sea over something they didn’t like and you got sandwiches for meals and no stateroom service. Usually only lasted for a day. The crew were great and made you feel that that were there to serve you and only you. Yes the Italia operated as the Princess Italia for Princess before coming to Costa. Princess also chartered the Carla C and operated her as Princess Carla, but the ship still was named the Carla C.

  8. Joe Sturges

    December 20, 2010 at 7:19 am

    Older ships are good ships. They can take the swells and winds unlike the current floating walls that traipse around the oceans of the world. Kudos to Louis Cruises for the award. To modify a famous poem,

    “Oh for a real ship, and a star to steer her by…!”

  9. Capt.Bill Waldmeier

    December 20, 2010 at 10:10 am

    Don’t forget to mention that the Aquamarine went to the Mexicans for just
    under $ 23,4 M. ( ex Nordic Prince, ex Carousel, ex Arielle ).

  10. Peter Knego

    December 20, 2010 at 10:28 am

    Thanks, Capt. Bill, for the additional sales price info. Actually, she fetched quite a good price considering her age.

  11. Capt.Bill Waldmeier

    December 20, 2010 at 5:15 pm

    Yep, Peter.
    A VERY good price….
    But you know the Greeks and their accounting…..

    Quote: In a filing, Louis said the sale resulted in a loss, from currency, of €1.09m, unquote……..

  12. anthony nicholas

    December 21, 2010 at 7:41 am

    I’m told that in the short term, Orient Queen will swap places with the Louis Majesty, with the larger ship doing the three and four day cruises from Piraeus come spring, and the Orient Queen running the longer trips.

    Louis are looking for another ship to replace the Aquamarine. Any bets on that ship finally being the long languishing Norwegian Dream?

  13. Capt.Bill Waldmeier

    December 22, 2010 at 6:33 am

    @ anthony nicholas:
    Any bets on that ship finally being the long languishing Norwegian Dream? Ungoute…….?

    What do you mean languishing N.Dream? I saw her in Turkey (Kusadasi) july 14, 2010 and trading as a cruiseship, all seemed OK……?

  14. Capt.Bill Waldmeier

    December 22, 2010 at 6:34 am

    Unquote, sorry

  15. Dick MacGregory

    December 23, 2010 at 12:52 am

    2 Collisions in her past, does the NORWEGIAN DREAM have incredibly bad luck or really bad Captains. I wonder if Louis Cruises cancelled the purchase due to seakeeping/steering issues. Saw her entering drydock in Boston for her pre-sale inspection and they were repairing her bow from the Montiviedo (sic) patch. Shortly therafter the sale fell through

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