Dual-Fuel LNG Ships For Costa Group – Other Recent LNG Installations – Converting Cruise Ships to LNG

The Cruise Examiner for 3rd August 2015

Costa LNG

In many ways, Costa’s new pair of 180,000-tonners will resemble AidaPrima, now being completed in Japan

Last week’s big news was that Meyer Werft is to build two new next-generation cruise ships for Costa Cruises, which will be the world’s first, and most certainly the largest, to run on LNG. While these will be built at its Turku shipyard, two similar ships will be built at Papenburg for sister company Aida Cruises. By burning LNG, large passenger ships are able to reduce their CO2 emissions by 25%, Nitrogen Oxides by 85 to 90% and Sulphur Oxides to practically nothing. LNG is a clean fuel, producing very low particle emissions, no visible smoke and no sludge. And as a bonus it is cheaper than marine diesel oil. There are problems however. LNG’s volume is 1.8 times that of diesel fuel, and with the necessity of using highly-insulated cylindrical tanks, the space required for bunker storage is almost four times what is required for conventional square tanks.

Costa Celebration Headed For The Bahamas – Sterling Cruise Lines From Aruba – Just Two European Cruise Ship Builders?

THE CRUISE EXAMINER at Cybercruises.com by Kevin Griffin

The Cruise Examiner for 15th December 2014... ..

Grand Celebration

Three weeks ago Costa Cruises abruptly withdrew the Costa Celebration from the Costa fleet before she had even been introduced. According to some sources, an immediate sale was in the offing. Now, it seems clearer that the intention was to send her to the Bahamas as a substitute for Celebration Cruise Lines’ damaged Bahamas Celebration on the Palm Beach-Freeport route, again as Grand Celebration. Meanwhile, Clipper’s Gemini will soon leave her accommodation ship role in the Shetlands to go back into full time cruising for the first time since 2011, with start-up company Sterling Cruise Lines. Both the Grand Celebration and the Gemini are managed by Fleetpro of Miami. Finally, do rumours that Fincantieri would like to acquire STX France mean that there will be only two European cruise ship builders by next year instead of the four we had in the past?

FOR THIS WEEK’S STORY                                                                                                  (See previous columns)

Mid-Size Newbuildings Gather Momentum – Celebrity Cruises’ New Class – Virgin Group To Branch Into Cruising

THE CRUISE EXAMINER at Cybercruises.com by Kevin Griffin

The Cruise Examiner for 8th December 2014... ..

Celebrity EclipseThis week comes much news, with an order for another mid-size ship by Seabourn and pending orders for three more by Silversea, while the first of Viking’s new class enters service in just six months now. Elsewhere, Celebrity Cruises is introducing a new class of ship, just slightly smaller than the Solstice class (above), while Virgin Cruises has announced a chief executive for its planned two-ship Florida-based operation.

FOR THIS WEEK’S STORY                                                                                                                 (See previous columns)

New Costa Flagship Christened – Two German Cruise Ship Owners Insolvent – Cruise Ship Names and Titles

THE CRUISE EXAMINER at Cybercruises.com by Kevin Griffin

The Cruise Examiner for 10th November 2014... ..



The just-christened 3,708-berth Costa Diadema at Savona for the inauguration of the second Costa cruise terminal there

This weekend saw the christening of the largest Italian-flag ship, the €550 million 3,708-berth Costa Diadema, in Genoa, as well as the opening of a second Costa cruise terminal in Savona (above). Meanwhile, in Germany, the owners of the Astor have followed the owners of the Deutschland into insolvency, although in both cases it is claimed that the ships will continue to operate. Finally we have a look at a couple of interesting ships’ names as related to where they will be based from next year.

FOR THIS WEEK’S STORY                                                                                                                      (See previous columns)

European River Cruising Guides: Stern vs Ward – To Dubai, Australia And Cape Town With MSC Cruises – Costa Joins The Outdoors Crowd

THE CRUISE EXAMINER at Cybercruises.com by Kevin Griffin

The Cruise Examiner for 23rd June 2014..


Costa Diadema stern view

Costa joins NCL and Carnival in the Great Outdoors, MSC to follow.

Two interesting new books have just arrived on our desk, in Steven B Stern’s “European Riverboats and Hotel Barges” and Douglas Ward’s “Berlitz Guide to River Cruising in Europe”, both hot off the presses. This week, we compare the two books for our readers. Elsewhere, MSC Cruises is offering special fares on a November cruise from Venice to Dubai in the MSC Orchestra, which also incidentally offers a way to get to Australia. Meanwhile, Costa reveals that it too is getting into outdoor promenades, with some details of its new flagship Costa Diadema.

FOR THIS WEEK’S STORY                                                                                          (See previous columns)

Quantum of the Seas To Go To China – Holland America Expands UK Program (Again) – Who Needs A North Star Capsule When You’ve Got This?

THE CRUISE EXAMINER at Cybercruises.com by Kevin Griffin

The Cruise Examiner for 21st April 2014..


Last week, Royal Caribbean International shocked the industry by announcing that from June 2015, its newest ship, the 167,000-ton Quantum of the Seas (above), will be based year-round in Shanghai. We take a look at the repercussions for Royal Caribbean and what the other Asia players, Costa, Princess and Star, are up to as well. Meanwhile, Holland America has been quietly growing its UK round-trip cruise market to the extent that in 2015 it will be offering thirteen round-trip UK cruises with a dedicated ship, the Ryndam, and boat trains that come right alongside at Harwich. And finally, we have an interesting look at some overhead views.

FOR THIS WEEK’S STORY                                                                                              (See previous columns)

Two New-Look Ships Re-Introduced On Friday – Other Cruise News: South Africa Liner Voyages – Rhapsody of the Seas Enters Sembawang Shipyard

          THE CRUISE EXAMINER at Cybercruises.com

          by Kevin Griffin

     The Cruise Examiner for 5th March 2012

The Minerva and Costa neoRomantica were both reintroduced to service on Friday March 2, 2012

Two cruise ships re-entered service after extensive refits last Friday, with Swan Hellenic reintroducing its Minerva with a new forward lounge, a new promenade deck and more balconies, and Costa Cruises’ renaming its Costa Romantica as Costa neoRomantica, with two extra half-decks, 111 new cabins and 120 new balconies, as well as a complete interior redesign. This week, we also look at the South Africa route, where this year’s first northbound sailing has already left Cape Town, and next year MSC Cruises will send MSC Opera and MSC Sinfonia south. Elsewhere, Royal Caribbean’s Rhapsody of the Seas has entered Sembawang Shipyard in Singapore for a month-long mid-life refit, before heading for Alaska this summer.

THIS WEEK’S STORY                                          (See previous columns)

The Cruise Examiner for 9th January 2012: American Cruise Agency Franchisors Expand to the UK – Other Cruise News: Two Carnival Corp & PLC Ships In For Emergency Drydockings Before World Cruises

          THE CRUISE EXAMINER at Cybercruises.com

          by Kevin Griffin

     The Cruise Examiner for 9th January 2012

The Costa Deliziosa “cruises” into Chantier Naval de Marseilles on 19th December – photograph © Ann Haynes

While there have been UK-based cruise agency franchise operations in the past, with one of the most successful being Fred. Olsen Travel affiliate GO Cruise, the Americans are now coming to the UK. Within the past year, two large US cruise franchise operators, Cruise Holidays and Cruise One, have each announced their intention to expand into the UK market. For more on this story continue to THIS WEEK’S STORY

Meanwhile, in two unrelated incidents, two ships owned by Carnival Corp & PLC lines had to go for emergency drydockings prior to setting out on their world cruises this year.The pre-Christmas season started out with a surprise for those booked onto the Costa Deliziosa’s December 18 cruise from Savona to Naples, Tunis and Ajaccio.  Two days before the 92,720-ton ship was due to sail, passengers were advised that she needed to go for an emergency drydocking at Marseilles before departing on her world cruise on December 28.

The ship then offered to take her passengers on board and cater for them from the dry dock in Marseilles, where they would be given courtesy shore tours. Those who did not want to go were offered a full refund and a 20% reduction on a future Costa cruise. And those who were game to go on this “drydocking cruise” were offered the cruise if they wanted to proceed, plus a full refund and a 20% reduction on another Costa cruise.

Surprisingly, 2,000 passengers decided to take the “drydocking cruise” to Marseilles and as she can carry 2,260 in lower berths this was a pretty full load. After an overnight run from Savona, the ship entered the Chantier Naval de Marseilles dry dock on the 19th and left it again on the 21st, with the emergency work completed, for Savona.

The bars were open and the shows went on and from reports from those on board everyone seems to have had a good time. From one of our own customers we had a note: “The passengers were very happy. It makes one wonder whether destinations are necessary in cruises!” Another passenger, Ann Haynes, has kindly provided us with this week’s photograph of the Costa Deliziosa “cruising” into dry dock. We are also pleased to be able to bring you Ann’s illustrated account of the “drydocking cruise” at her own blog, here at Haynes World.

Costa Deliziosa eventually departed Savona on schedule on her first world cruise, a 99-day voyage, and Costa’s first  in seventeen years, on December 28, on a cruise that was sold out. She will return to Savona on April 16.

Meanwhile, P&O Cruises’ 30,277-ton Adonia arrived yesterday at the A&P shipyard at Falmouth for unscheduled emergency repairs before starting her own 87-day “South American Adventure” world cruise next Friday. A&P must make the necessary repairs in four days flat, as, unfortunately for the superstitious, her next departure date just happens to be Friday the 13th. That cruise too is sold out.

A 10-day cruise from Naples to Southampton scheduled for last Tuesday had to be cancelled, and passengers were given a full refund plus a 25% credit toward a future cruise. P&O described the work as “essential maintenance” and didn’t provide any details, but passengers who were interviewed by one of our clients on another ship in Salerno last week indicated that the ship’s stabilisers were not working properly and they had missed a call in Egypt because of rough weather.

The 710-berth Adonia was built in 1990 and entered service for Renaissance Cruises as the R8, later becoming Swan Hellenic’s Minerva II and Princess Cruises’ Royal Princess before joining P&O as the Adonia in May of last year.

THIS WEEK’S STORY                                          (See previous columns)

The Cruise Examiner for 29th August 2011 – Royal Caribbean Fails the Avis Test : “We Try Harder” – Other Cruise News: Of Boats and Balconies: Costa Romantica – Tahiti’s Aranui 3 To Be Upgraded

THE CRUISE EXAMINER at Cybercruises.com
by Kevin Griffin

Royal Caribbean Fails the Avis Test : “We Try Harder” – Other Cruise News: Of Boats and Balconies: Costa Romantica  – Tahiti’s Aranui 3 To Be Upgraded

Almost fifty years ago, in 1962, Avis came up with the advertising slogan “Avis Is Only No. 2, We Try Harder.” Last week, the number two in the cruising world, Royal Caribbean, failed this test by allowing Carnival to try harder while it did nothing, or at least very little. Costa Cruises, in recently announcing that it would add two more decks and some balconies to its Costa Romantica, has joined the ranks of Carnival Cruise Lines and Holland America Line in making alterations to their ships that make them less aesthetically pleasing in order to make more money. And the 200-passenger Aranui 3 is to be upgraded this winter.


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The Cruise Examiner for 20th June 2011: Costa Cruises: The Biggest In Europe With Worldwide Itineraries – Other Cruise News: Charleston Residents Sue Carnival Cruise Lines – Europe Generated 5.5 Million Cruisers in 2010

THE CRUISE EXAMINER at Cybercruises.com
by Kevin Griffin

Costa Cruises: The Biggest In Europe With Worldwide Itineraries – Other Cruise News: Charleston Residents Sue Carnival Cruise Lines  – Europe Generated 5.5 Million Cruisers in 2010

With the impending christening of the 114,500-ton 3,800-guest Costa Favolosa in Trieste next week, an event that is being tied in to the 150th Anniversary of Italian unification, it is worth having a look at the Costa Cruises Group. With its Aida and Iberocruceros branches in Germany and Spain it is now by far the largest cruise operator in Europe. We also take a look at why some people in Charleston have decided to sue Carnival Cruise Lines for basing a ship in their port. And the European Cruise Council confirmed last week that the European cruise market numbered 5.5 million in 2012, accounting for 30% of the global market.