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Titanic II projected service entry postponed by two years to 2018

The projected entry into service of  Titanic II is now scheduled to take place in 2018 rather than 2016 as originally envisaged, according to Clive Palmer, owner of Blue Star Line Pty Ltd, the Australian company that plans to build the ship in China.

“The first project development phase has been completed,” said Palmer, owner of Blue Star Line. “Currently the focus is on the evaluation and the project master plan development and more information will be available once this phase is completed."

"Titanic II is scheduled to be launched from its construction base in China in 2018, before her maiden passenger voyage retracing its original journey from Southampton to New York,” he said in a statement.

Fincantieri launches IPO, values company at up to €1.24 billion

Fincantieri, the Italian state owned shipbuilder that is major builder of cruise ships, has launched initial public offering (IPO) of shares, with an aim to list on Borsa Italiana in Milan, the bourse said in a statement.

Shares in the shipbuilder would be offered to investors in an upcoming initial public offering at an indicative price of €0.78-€1.0 euros per share, making for a market capitalisation of €969 million to €1.24 billion.

Fincantieri said that a maximum of 703.98 million shares would be sold through the offering, which is set to run from next Monday until June 27. While the maximum indicative price is binding, Fincantieri said that the minimum is not.

Wybecke Meier appointed new TUI Cruises’ CEO

Wybecke Meier has been appointed new chief executive officer of TUI Cruises, the Hamburg based premium market cruise shipping company. She will assume her position on 1 October and she follows Richard Vogel, who resigned last week.

She comes from outside the TUI group and she has worked in the travel industry for many years.

Mein Schiff 3, the first newbuilding of TUI Cruises, which is 50% owned by Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd (RCCL) and 50% by TUI AG, was named in Hamburg on Thursday. The 99,300 gross ton vessel will be followed by a sister ship next spring. The first two ships of the company were transfers from Celebrity Cruises.

Richard Fain, chairman and ceo of RCCL, said in a statement that TUI Cruises has not moved from stage of establishing and building up its business to stage of expansion.

TUI Cruises' CEO Richard Vogel to leave company

Richard Vogel, CEO of the Hamburg based premium cruise market line TUI Cruises, has decided to leave the company and assume a senior position in a company outside the TUI group, TUI Cruises said in a statement.

“We have built TUI Cruises to a successful and profitable enterprise. With Mein Schiff 3, we will introduce our first newbuilding into service. For me personally, this is a good point in time to chart a new course,” Vogel said in the statement.

Mein Schiff 3 is a 99,300 gross ton ship that will officially becommissioned on Thursday. Vogel will leave the company at an unspecified time this year, TUI Cruises said.

The company is 50/50 owned by TUI AG, the German travel to shipping group and Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd, the Miami based  company that is the second largest cruise shipping company in the world.

Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. to develop Cape Liberty Cruise Port

Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. today announced that it has entered into an agreement with The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey for the cruise company to develop the next phase of Cape Liberty Cruise Port in Bayonne, N.J. The $55 million project will include the construction of a new, state-of-the-art guest terminal, with 125,000 sq. ft. of check-in, customs and immigration, and luggage processing space, as well as a 900-car parking structure and pier improvements. The new facilities will be erected adjacent to the current terminal used to welcome guests and will accommodate the cruise company’s ships, including the next-generation Quantum of the Seas and Anthem of the Seas, each to start service at Cape Liberty in November 2014 and 2015, respectively. Ground breaking has already occurred and the new terminal is scheduled to be completed in November 2014.

“The planned state-of-the-art cruise terminal at Cape Liberty will perfectly complement our Quantum-class ships, which will be the most technologically advanced ships in the world,” said Adam Goldstein, president and COO of Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. “We are glad to work with the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey to develop world-class facilities for vacationers to embark on the most innovative cruise ships for an experience that can only be found on Royal Caribbean.”

Opened in May 2004, Cape Liberty Cruise Port is located 15 minutes from Newark Liberty International Airport and seven miles south of Manhattan. The port is the year-round home of Royal Caribbean International’s Explorer of the Seas, and seasonally for Celebrity Cruises’ Celebrity Summit. The port will welcome the highly anticipated Quantum of the Seas for its inaugural season sailing to the Caribbean and Bahamas starting in November 2014. Liberty of the Seas will then homeport at Cape Liberty in summer 2015 and become Royal Caribbean International’s largest and most innovative cruise ship to sail to Bermuda. In winter 2015, Cape Liberty will be the homeport for Quantum of the Seas’ sister-ship Anthem of the Seas, after the ship completes its inaugural season in Europe.

“The City of Bayonne welcomes the expansion of Royal Caribbean’s Cape Liberty Cruise Terminal along with the related construction and permanent jobs, enhanced tourism and commerce that will be created as Royal Caribbean expands their home port at the Peninsula at Bayonne Harbor,” said Bayonne Mayor Mark Smith. “Their plans fully complement our plans to develop Harbor Station South as a full service retail, and commercial destination with flagship hotels, restaurants and entertainment venues close to the port.”

Viking Star