With the majority of news being highly optimistic in the last few months regarding cruise ships, it would be easy to forget the heavy toll the pandemic has had on the industry. Yet, it only takes one video to bring back those memories.
In this case, it’s the iconic funnel removed from Grand Celebration, or how it was previously known, Celebration, when it was sailing for Carnival Cruise Line.
Since January this year, the ship has been in Alang, India, when it was beached, and preparations were made for the iconic ship to become scrap metal. In the video, which you can see below, the breakers tie a cable to the hull and pull the funnel clean off the vessel.
Broken Up and Scrapped
As we can see in the video, there isn’t much left from what was once a proud and beautiful cruise ship. One of the last significant features still present on the vessel was the iconic Carnival Cruise Line funnel, yet even that had to go. The breakers attached a cable to the funnel and, with some force, pulled it clear off the ship and into the shallow water in the shipyard.
The cutting process started in March of this year, two months after the ship was beached on January 14, and is expected to take around ten months before the vessel has been completely dismantled.
In general, a vast majority of the materials are sold as scrap metal; however, even the materials used in the hotel sections of the vessel will usually find a new home. The ship-breaking industry has been a profitable one in the last 18 months.
Several companies were forced to sell off some or even the majority of their ships due to financial problems caused by the pandemic; other companies used the pause in operations to significantly rejuvenate their fleet. Carnival Corporation and Royal Caribbean both scrapped a significant amount of ships in the last year.
Celebration has long been a favorite ship for many cruise fans; she was one of the original fun ships with her small size. Perhaps this is why Carnival Cruise Line decided to give the Celebration name to its newest ship and sistership to Mardi Gras, Carnival Celebration, which will be all set to join the fleet in November 2022.
A Rich History in Cruising
Grand Celebration, Celebration, Costa Celebration, just a few names the 1987-built cruise ship sailed under in her 34 years of service on the seven seas. Carnival Cruise Line first acquired the ship in 1987 under the name Celebration.
She was one of three out of the Holiday class of ships. Iconic in many ways, but in particular, the Holiday-class ships were the first set of new-builds by Carnival Cruise Line.
She was built in 1986 at the Kockums Varv shipyard in Malmö, Sweden, for Carnival. Celebration was in service for the cruise giant for over 20 years.
The 1,497 passenger, 47,262 gross ton, cruise ship was turned over to Ibero Cruises in 2008 and renamed Grand Celebration after a refit. After a short stint with Costa Cruises in 2014, she arrived with her last owner, Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line.
The iconic ship sailed the route between Florida and the Bahamas for six years; however, the pandemic caused some significant issues for the ship’s owners.
Forced by the mounting costs involved with keeping a small company running through the pandemic, Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line was eventually forced to sell Grand Celebration to an undisclosed buyer in November of last year.
As it turns out, the ship would be sold for scrap and beached at the ship-breaking yard in Alang, India.