The hope of restarting operations for Crystal Cruises seems to be well and truly out of the window now the Supreme Court Commercial Division in the Bahamas published the official notice of sale for two of the former cruise line’s ships. Bids for the vessels should be in by June 7 and the winning bidder will be notified a week later.
Two Crystal Ships Up For Auction
Crystal Cruises’ two luxury cruise ships, Crystal Symphony and Crystal Serenity, will be going up for auction next month. The ships have been sitting at Freeport in the Bahamas since the collapse of the luxury cruise line.
Although both Crystal Serenity and Crystal Symphony were widely regarded as some of the most luxurious cruise ships globally, their value at auction remains uncertain. Both ships are relatively old, especially compared to luxury cruise ships sailing for competitors such as Seabourn and Silverseas.
The 51,000 gross tons Crystal Symphony entered service in 1995. Built by the Kvaerner Masa shipyard in Finland, she underwent a significant 65 million dollar refit in 2012 and another refit in 2017.
Only slightly younger, the 2003-built, 68,870 gross tons Crystal Serenity saw a complete refit in 2018, adding new dining options and open-seating dining and new lounges and entertainment venues.
Experts have put a value of $22.2m for scrap value and a trading value of $87.4m on the Crystal Serenity. For Crystal Symphony, the scrap value is estimated to be around $17m, with a trading value of only $18.2m.
Inspection of the vessels is ongoing for interested parties; final bids are due with the courts on June 7, with the winning bidder announced on June 14. The vessels have been crewed and maintained in the months since guest operations ceased by V-ships; however, the courts warn that the ships are auctioned off on an as-is basis.
Although several parties have shown interest in the last couple of months, the most likely contender for the vessel is former Silverseas operator Manfredi Lefebvre D’Ovidio. After selling Silverseas to Royal Caribbean, the chairman of investment company Heritage Group already purchased luxury travel company Abercrombie & Kent and is expected to be expanding further.
What About The Other Crystal Ships?
Before Genting Hong Kong took Crystal Cruises down, the company had expanded rapidly in the last couple of years. Besides several river ships, it also included a luxury jet charter, and the most valuable assets, a brand-new expedition ship, and the company’s brand name and assets.
It is already becoming clear that there are many takers for the five river ships that Crystal Cruises operated. However, the most valuable asset will likely be the new expedition cruise ship Crystal only used for one season in Antarctica, Crystal Endeavour.
The former offices and warehouses of the cruise line in Florida have also been emptied and auctioned. This included everything from furniture to playing cards. With more than 30.000
The company’s brand name and assets, such as guest lists and other valuable marketing material, remain in the hands of Genting Hong Kong, or rather those in charge of liquidating the parent company.
As for those in charge of the collapse, they have already moved on to greener pastures and started operations with a newly formed cruise line, Resorts World Cruises.