Kristina Cruises Ceases Operations As A Cruises Line

by Kalle Id

As previously reported on MaritimeMatters, the Finland-based Kristina Cruises applied for a debt restructuring programme in November 2013. As a result of the debt restructuring, the company sold their sole ship, the KRISTINA KATARINA, to an unnamed international investor group on 8th January 2014.

The Kristina Katarina departing Helsinki on a May evening in 2012. Kristina Cruises never found enough passengers from the Finnish market to fill the 2010-acquired ship. Photo copyright © 2012 Kalle Id.
The Kristina Katarina departing Helsinki on a May evening in 2012. Kristina Cruises never found enough passengers from the Finnish market to fill the 2010-acquired ship. Photo copyright © 2012 Kalle Id.

Kristina Cruises have previously acted as a tour operator in addition to a cruise line, selling cruises on other companies’ river cruise vessels. From now on, Kristina Cruises will specialise exclusively on these operations, selling tour packages on both river and ocean cruise ships of other companies. As for the KRISTINA KATARINA, her future is still unknown. The ship was given a thorough refit as recently as 2010 and as such it should not be too difficult to find a new operator for her.

The sale of the KRISTINA KATARINA marks the end of Finnish-flagged ships in international cruises trades, an involvement that begun with Finnlines’ FINNPARTNER in 1973. The heyday of Finnish cruise ships was in the late 1970s, when Finnlines operated with the FINNSTAR and Silja Cruises with the ILMATAR on European itineraries, aimed at an international audience. Both these companies were forced to give up on international cruises due to climbing costs of Finnish-flagged cruise operations. Kristina Cruises took over the mantle of the prime Finnish cruise line in 1985 and continued trading until last year, though for most of the company’s existence their main focus were Finnish rather than international passengers.

Kalle Id

Kalle Id

Kalle Id, MaritimeMatters' Helsinki correspondent, is a Finnish maritime historian, photographer and journalist, with a Master's Degree in history from the University of Helsinki. His early-age exposure to ferry travel led to a lifetime fascination with passenger ships, both the cruise ferries of his home waters and the cruise ships and ferries of further afield. Kalle maintains his own ship photography blog at kships.blogspot.com. Contrary to the popular belief, he writes under his real name.
Kalle Id
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