Greek ferry operator Seajets has been revealed as the buyer of the 77,499-gt cruiseship Oceana (built 2000), which was sold in early July by Carnival Corp’s P&O Cruises.

Vessel databases show the Fincantieri-built vessel has been renamed Queen of the Oceans.

The cruiseship is moored at the Greek port of Patras, according to its latest AIS update.

Sources with knowledge of the deal told TradeWinds that the vessel was sold to a nominee of Seajets, but the sale price remains confidential.

Clarksons' lists Seajets as the vessel's owner and manager.

Seajets is headed up by Greek shipowner Marios Iliopoulos and operates a fleet of 16 high-speed ferries and ropax vessels.

Its purchase of the Oceana marks Seajets' first foray into cruise vessels.

The ship was sold earlier this month by P&O Cruises, a UK-based brand of Carnival, in an effort to free up cash for the cruise giant following voyage cancellations and financial impacts caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

Rumours in the market at the time of the transaction said the Oceana's sale price was close to its scrap value, which VesselsValue estimates at $9.23m.

Seajets did not respond to a request for comment.

Carnival's capacity cuts

On Thursday this week, Carnival Cruise Line confirmed it is placing two of its Fantasy-class cruiseships in long-term cold lay-up, with no specific timeline identified for their return to operation.

The vessels involved are the 70,500-gt Carnival Fascination (built 1994) and 70,400-gt Carnival Imagination (built 1995).

At the same time, Carnival Cruise Line confirmed the departure of two other ships that TradeWinds recently reported were sold for recycling.

The 70,400-gt Carnival Fantasy (built 1990) and Carnival Inspiration (built 1996) are currently heading to Turkey where they will be dismantled at European Union-approved shipbreaking facilities.

The removal of the ships effectively cuts Carnival’s capacity by about 15%.