May Update: Here Are the Latest Five Cruise Ship Moves

American Duchess

Cruise Industry News looks at some of the key ship moves and transactions that took place between April and May 2024.

For a complete overview of the market, see the Secondhand Market Report by Cruise Industry News.

AQV River Ships
Ships: American Queen, American Empress, American Duchess and American Countess
Capacity: 166 to 426 guests
Tonnage: 20,079 (combined)
Year built: 1995 to 2020
Move: Sold in auction to American Cruise Lines
Date: April 2024

American Queen Voyages’ river fleet was sold to American Cruise Lines in an auction in early April. The lineup includes the 436-guest American Queen, which entered service in 1995 and is considered the largest paddle-wheeler ever built.

Three additional traditional river boats – the 223-guest American Empress, the 166-guest American Duchess and the 246-guest American Countess – were also acquired by ACL as part of a $5.5 million bid.

AQV Coastal Ships
Ships: Ocean Navigator and Ocean Voyager
Capacity: 202 guests each
Tonnage: 4,954 each
Year built: 2001
Move: Sold in auction to John Waggoner
Date: April 2024

In addition to AQV’s river fleet, the Ocean Navigator and the Ocean Voyager were also sold at auction in early April. The 202-guest coastal vessels were acquired by American Queen’s founder John Waggoner.

Built to sail in the Great Lakes, the 2001-built sister ships were acquired with a bid of $1.8 million.

Ocean Victory
Capacity: 186 guests
Tonnage: 8,000
Year built: 2021
Move: Chartered to Alma Cruceros
Date: April 2024

SunStone’s Ocean Victory has a new charterer for the summer seasons starting in 2025: Alma Cruceros. The Spain-based startup cruise line announced a deal to operate the 186-guest vessel in early April.

Part of SunStone’s China-built Infinity Class, the Ocean Victory was originally designed to offer upscale experiences in remote and polar regions, including Antarctica and the Arctic.

World Explorer and World Seeker
Capacity: 200 guests each

Tonnage: 9,300 each
Year built: 2019 and 2025
Move: Acquired by Windstar Cruises
Date: April 2024

As part of a deal announced in early April, Windstar Cruises acquired two of Mystic Invest’s oceangoing ships, the World Explorer and the World Seeker.

Currently chartered to Rivages du Monde and Quark Expeditions, the Explorer is set to enter service for the luxury operator in late 2026. Still under construction in Portugal, the Seeker will debut first, in late 2025.

Mykonos Magic (ex-Costa Magica)
Capacity: 2,720 guests
Tonnage: 103,000
Year built: 2004
Move: To be operated by Neonyx Cruises
Date: April 2024

The former Costa Magica will be operated by Neonyx Cruises. After being acquired by the Greek ferry operator Seajets, the 2004-built vessel is set to enter service for the new cruise line in the Eastern Mediterranean starting in July.

Also based in Greece, Neonyx plans to offer an adults-only product onboard the Mykonos Magic, which will be renamed Goddess of the Night ahead of its debut.

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