July 15, 2024
MARITIME: Cunard’s Princess Beached at Aliaga Ship Breaking Yard
Disabled container ship towed to Rhodes in Greece
– By Godswill Odiong

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By Our Correspondent
The vessel GOLDEN IRIS, also known as CUNARD PRINCESS, has been beached at Aliaga ship-breaking yard in Turkey to be dismantled, according to FleetMon.

It stated: “The vessel GOLDEN IRIS known as CUNARD PRINCESS, after operating for over 45 years, has been beached at Aliaga ship-breaking yard in Turkey to be dismantled and sold for scrap metal.

“The 537-foot vessel was built by Denmark’s Burmeister and Wain in the 1970s, along with another vessel ordered by the hotel chain; MGM, which was looking to capitalize on the rapidly expanding cruise industry.

“However, MGM pulled back, and the ships were sold to Cunard before completion. Cunard transferred the vessels after being built to another shipyard in Italy for outfitting. The CUNARD PRINCESS entered service in 1977, sailing from New York to Bermuda. Over time her deployments expanded to include Florida, Alaska, and the Mexican Riviera. The vessel was then briefly leased to an Italian Shipping Company, Lauro, for Mediterranean cruises.

“It was followed by a brief stint with the US Government, which used it as a recreation center in the Persian Gulf from 1990-1991. The vessel was then sold to StarLauro, which would become the predecessor of MSC cruises and was renamed RHAPSODY under its new ownership. In 2009, it was sold to Israel-based Mano Maritime for seasonal cruises, after which it was retired in 2018 and went up for sale. After 4 years of being laid up in Greece, the vessel arrived at Aliaga in Turkey on July 11th to be dismantled to scrap.”

It also stated: “All the older cruise vessels are finding their way to scrap yards as they have become relics of a time. 37 other similar older cruise vessels have been scrapped since 2020, attesting to their obsolete nature. The recent impetus towards reducing emissions has only hastened their end. These vessels are known to be highly polluting and expensive, with the financial benefits they provided dwindling over the years.”

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