Saturday, December 20, 2008

NCL Goes Forward With Single "F3" Ship

Rumor and speculation have floated across the Atlantic recently about a spat between Norwegian Cruise Line (NCL) and shipbuilder STX France Cruise SA, STX Europe’s French shipyard (formerly known as Aker Yards ASA). Earlier this year it was speculated that work on NCL's F3 new ship project had ground to a halt. Then it was said to be cancelled and that the hull under construction was being shopped to other cruise lines. It looks like smooth sailing once again, though, as both companies issued a joint statement indicating they have reached an agreement and are moving forward with the construction of the F3 cruise ship project—but it won't be quite the same.

NCL and STX Europe have agreed to revise the original F3 order. STX France Cruise is now building only one F3 ship at 150,000-tons with a total of 4,200 passenger berths, representing the largest ship in NCL’s fleet. This will mean a continuation of the original hull which is currently in the early phases of construction, with delivery set for late May 2010, as originally scheduled. The planned second vessel, currently only in the preparatory stages, will not be built. Further terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

“With this agreement, we can all focus on completing the new vessel successfully,” said Kevin Sheehan, NCL’s president and CEO. “We are looking forward to the arrival of our much-anticipated F3 ship as it represents a major step forward for NCL in terms of ship size, design and innovation.”

To date, information has only been revealed regarding F3’s unique staterooms and nightlife. While NCL plans to unveil the full F3 story in the near future, has those topics covered:

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