The two largest cruise ships in the fleet of failed Genting Hong Kong subsidiary Crystal Cruises will be auctioned in the Bahamas on 7 June.
The 68,900-gt, 1,070-passenger Crystal Serenity (built 2003) and 51,000-gt, 940-passenger Crystal Symphony (built 1995) are being sold via a sealed tender process, with bids to be submitted with the Supreme Court of the Commonwealth of the Bahamas together with a 10% deposit.
The luxury category ships have been under arrest since 5 February in Freeport, where they arrived following the January collapse of Crystal’s parent company, Genting Hong Kong.
Cruise brokers told TradeWinds that both ships are attractive candidates for premium cruise operators looking to expand or upgrade their fleets. The vessels have been extensively refurbished in recent years and the maintenance they have received has been “top notch”.
They are described as being of interest to ultra-deluxe operators but are considered good candidates for the companies in the next tier down, which have similar but smaller ships.
Most cruise ship sales over the past two years have been at or slightly above scrap value, as Carnival Corp and Royal Caribbean have flooded the market with unwanted cast-offs.
However, few ships at the luxury end of the spectrum have been put up for sale over the past two years.
VesselsValue puts a scrap value of $22.2m and a trading value of $87.4m on the Crystal Serenity and a scrap value of $17m and a trading value of only $18.2m on the Crystal Symphony.
However, brokers cautioned that putting price tags on the duo is difficult due to the continuing uncertainty in the cruise trades.
If the Bahamian courts can arrange a quick sale of the pair, Genting’s liquidators will be left trying to find buyers for Crystal’s 20,500-gt, 200-berth polar-classed expedition cruise ship Crystal Endeavor (built 2021) and four European river cruise ships.
Industry sources said that these vessels, which are all in European waters, are already attracting strong interest from potential buyers.
TradeWinds has reported that Genting’s liquidators recently sold the three older cruise ships operated by the Star Cruises brand for recycling in India.
In March, the German administrators of Genting’s shipyard division sold Lloyd Werft shipyard to a joint venture between marine engineering firm Heinrich Ronner Group and real estate company Zech Group.
Efforts are being made to find a buyer for the nearly completed 201,000-gt, 5,000-passenger Global Dream under construction at MV Werften, after which efforts will turn to selling the yard.
In Asia, Genting majority shareholder Lim Kok Thay formed a new cruise line, Resorts World Cruises, and chartered the 150,700-gt, 3,360-berth Genting Dream (built 2016) from a leasing company owned by a consortium of Chinese banks.