According to today's news on www.cruisecritic.com sources believe that NCL will most likely be selling off the Norway, not for scrap but to either sail in Asia or be a floating hotel. Check out the original story at the above address.
Hmm.....The United States? that reminds me. i read somewhere a while ago that the Big U was suppost to be suppost to be turned into a cruise ship and not in philadelphia anymore, but when i drove over the bridge from philadelphia to NJ last week the United States was still there. anyone know whats going on w/ her?
When watching the evening news on French TV tonight, they gave a bit of news about Norway and confirmed that NCL has no intention to repair the ship, nor to keep her...
But they didn't mention anything about the fate of the ship: scrapped, sold...I bet NCL doesn't even know that yet.
With NCL not wanting to invest the money to get Norway up to standards, I think the end is near for Big U. Unites States is stripped of all of its furnishings, and would require as much money to refurbish as it would to order a new one. I know the thought of her going to Alang or Brownsville is sad, but I don't know of anyone who is willing to invest the billion dollars to get her up to snuff. Especially with rising fuel prices.
I suspect it would take a lot more to refit the United States. The ship wasn't just stripped of her furnishings and appointments, but all of her fittings, her boats, navigation equipment, etc. What remains is essentially a hollowed out shell with the engines still inside. I suppose they could be made operational again, but what James said about rising fuel prices is right on the mark! Who's going to shovel out that sort of money for a plant which would be hopelessly uneconomical by todays standards?
I don't think NCL's Board of Directors is all that anxious to get fired by the stockholders for stupidity above and beyond the call of brain dead!
The other thing to consider about United States, is when it was built, it was hailed as a "Fireproof" ship. This was due to the HUGE amount of asbestous that is incorporated into the decks, ceilings and walls. The removal of this alone, would be astronomical in dollars.
I did not think it was all removed, as they used an asbestos compound called "Marinite" in place of the plywood and they could not get the US to fund it. So from what you stated, the entire ship has been stripped down to the steel bulkheads, and would need a 100% overhaul. I still do not think this will ever happen.
>>So from what you stated, the entire ship has been stripped down to the steel bulkheads,<<
The photos I've seen of the ship would tend to indicate that this was exactly what happened. Not surprising considering the sort of anxiety that the prospect of dealing with this stuff causes.
>>...and would need a 100% overhaul. I still do not think this will ever happen.<<
Neither do I. To put the ship back in service again would require not just a refitting, but a complete fitting out. In today's climate, I just don't see that happening. For sentimental reasons, I wouldn't mind being proven wrong, but I don't think I will be.
According to a news item (4/5/05) from Cruise Critic's internet site, NCL announced that the Norway will be transferred to parent company Star Cruises, which "intends to utilize the ship in a new venture". Details undisclosed.
It looks as if the Norway is about to leave Bremerhaven for Singapore, according to the Maritime Matters website. She is going to be towed by the Chinese tug De Da around South Africa to become either a floating casino and hotel at an amusement resort island near Singapore's cruise terminal or alternatively will operate at very low speed as a casino cruise, being run on her two undamaged boilers.
She will have an NCL crew of 40 aboard for the journey. Before she leaves Germany, environmentalists have demanded the removal of asbestos.
The same report also says that the Norway is owned by Indian breakers. Are the owners the breakers or NCL?
I assume you are referring to the tow around S. Africa? That seems to be a particular hazarous and unlucky trip for a lot of ships under tow, with more than one ship cheating the shipbreaker's torch. Wasn't the former Britanis one of those casualties along this particular route?