Reports are circulating that Louis Cruise Line's Emerald - previously Grace Line's Santa Rosa has been sold.
Report link the Emerald to Alas International Holdings, which is said to be chartering the ship to South Korea's Yeosu Expo Cruise Corporation between May 8th and August 12th as a floating hotel. After the charter ends. the Emerald is expected to sail in the Caribbean from Columbia and Panama on 7-day cruises.
A brief history of the Emerald/Santa Rosa.
Constructed for Grace Line as the Santa Rosa for the New York to South America run. With the increase in operating costs and US subsidies dwindling the Santa Rosa was lay-up.
She was sold to South American interests who wanted to return the ship to service, but this never happened and she continued her lay-up.
The Santa Rosa was purchased by Regency Cruises which transformed the ship into the modern Regent Rainbow.
Unfortunately not included in her refit was her engines. Her fuel hungry steam engines remained in place.
When Regency went bankrupt, the Regent Rainbow, was purchased by Louis Cruise Line. The Regent Rainbow was renamed the Emerald and was chartered to the UK's Thomson Cruises. After her operating costs soared, Thomson ended their charter of the Emerald and she was returned to Louis Cruise Line.
Louis Cruise Line placed the Emerald in lay-up awaiting:
- a further charter or
- an uplift in the economy and demand for cruises or
- a potential buyer.
Hopefully the Emerald will continue to operate for years to come.
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