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Cancelled Cruiseships for Dun Laoghaire Include 'List' of Detained CMV Ship But Not Irish Serving Fleetmate

21st August 2020
The above 'FILE' photo taken earlier this year in the UK during Covid-19's first lock-down, despicts the impact on the cruise industry in Ireland too from the pandemic and since. In the foreground, Vasco da Gama arrived on 5 May to lay-up in Tilbury Dock, London after a repositioning voyage from Cape Town, South Africa (but due twice to Dun Laoghaire this summer) however the ship's operator CMV since collapsed into administration. Also already laid-up amongst mostly cruiseships, Saga Sapphaire (behind Vasco da Gama) notably the only cruiseship to call to Irish ports this season in March (was sold by Saga Cruises recently). It's  successor, Spirit of Adventure (top right) built last year then made its maiden cruise to Ireland (remains in situ) opposite laid-up Astoria an Irish caller. In immediate foreground is also laid-up (non Covid related) P&O Ferries reserve freightferry European Seaway which in recent years covered Larne-Cairnryan crossings. The above 'FILE' photo taken earlier this year in the UK during Covid-19's first lock-down, despicts the impact on the cruise industry in Ireland too from the pandemic and since. In the foreground, Vasco da Gama arrived on 5 May to lay-up in Tilbury Dock, London after a repositioning voyage from Cape Town, South Africa (but due twice to Dun Laoghaire this summer) however the ship's operator CMV since collapsed into administration. Also already laid-up amongst mostly cruiseships, Saga Sapphaire (behind Vasco da Gama) notably the only cruiseship to call to Irish ports this season in March (was sold by Saga Cruises recently). It's successor, Spirit of Adventure (top right) built last year then made its maiden cruise to Ireland (remains in situ) opposite laid-up Astoria an Irish caller. In immediate foreground is also laid-up (non Covid related) P&O Ferries reserve freightferry European Seaway which in recent years covered Larne-Cairnryan crossings. Photo: CMV-twitter

On this date next month a cruiseship due to call to Dun Laoghaire Harbour however remains on the harbour's website list of callers despite the collapse of the ship's cruise-operator CMV, writes Jehan Ashmore

Noting in addition the Government's ban on cruise ships calling to Irish ports as part of Covid-19 travel restrictions which affected this year's Dun Laoghaire Harbour season dramatically with cancelled cruise calls (list here) is all too apparent and likewise nationwide, see: 'Cruise Industry in Ireland will not recover until 2023'. 

Next month the 1,626 passenger Vasco da Gama was scheduled on 21 September with a debut call to the south Dublin Bay harbour operated by Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council. This visit however cannot take place given the cruiseship's operator, Cruise & Maritime Voyages (CMV) went into administration in June following the severe impact caused by the Covid-19 lock-down on the global industry.

In addition to Vasco da Gama (see photo) other fleetmates have come and gone in Tilbury Docks, London where Magellen (which Irish 'homeported' of recent years out of Dublin and Cork) is a more recent caller to the dock on the Thames estuary. It was here that the Maritime Coastguard Agency however found five deficiencies with three grounds for detention in the case of Vaco da Gama and fleetmates in June according to the UK agency's website though with exception of Magellan.  

In addition to CMV unable to make a debut off Dun Laoghaire Harbour, firstly in June, the list includes five 'turnaround' calls. One of which would of involved an overnight port of call by the Crystal Symphony, albeit requiring the Crystal Cruises ship to make an anchorage call in Dublin Bay.

Vasco da Gama was among the more recent secondhand tonnage to join CMV following a career that began as Statendam, leadship of Holland America Line (HAL) quartet of the S class series.

Statendam was transferred to P&O Cruises Australia and renamed Pacific Eden before returning to the northern hemisphere with CMV deploying the ship on cruises to include Dublin Port last year where footage of the handsome looking vessel can be seen from footage on You-Tube here.

Unlike this ship, some of the CMV fleet this season sported a new 'all blue livery' scheme for this year which marked the 10th anniversary of CMV's establishment which expanded by offering mostly the UK market cruisegoers conveniently embarking in regional ports. Whereas, CMV in Ireland provided holidaymakers direct cruises served out of Dublin and Cork (Cobh) through Magellan and not CMV's first cruiseship Marco Polo concentrating on UK cruisegoers.  

In addition a second cruise ship remains on the Dun Laoghaire Harbour list but not 'cancelled' in regards to Sea Cloud II, an impressive Maltese flagged sail-powered cruiseship which was due to have made a maiden call to the Irish port earlier this month.

The visit of Sea Cloud II would of involved an overnight turnaround cruise with clientele from the high-end of the luxury cruise market. A demonstration of this particular luxurious market is that the tallship's operator, Sea Cloud Cruises have a crew of 65 personnel to serve guests shy of only 100 on the Spanish built 'windjammer' which entered service in 2000. Sadly this opportunity has gone to make such an inaugural call.

As for the final end of season cruise caller this was scheduled to take place in early October as one of the turnaround callers. In this case the brand new boutique megayacht like ship, World Explorer was also cancelled.

Published in Cruise Liners
Jehan Ashmore

About The Author

Jehan Ashmore

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Jehan Ashmore is a marine correspondent, researcher and photographer, specialising in Irish ports, shipping and the ferry sector serving the UK and directly to mainland Europe. Jehan also occasionally writes a column, 'Maritime' Dalkey for the (Dalkey Community Council Newsletter) in addition to contributing to UK marine periodicals. 

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