Royal Caribbean’s former Monarch of the Seas made her final voyage, arriving at the scrapyard in Aliaga, Turkey on Monday.
The coastal region of western Turkey is known for its dozens of shipbreaking yards where the vessels are cut up, section by section, and disposed of. Often, this means parts of ships are recycled.
Last month, Monarch was listed on a shipbroker’s website for $125,000,000. Shortly after being listed, the ship was spotted in Naples and Malta offloading heavy equipment while the interior was being dismantled.
This is usually the step that immediately precedes a ship being sent for scrapping.
At the end of its Royal Caribbean tenure, the ship sailed short cruises out of Port Canaveral, Florida, offering three- and four-night trips to the Bahamas and the company’s private island, CocoCay. (This was before the company’s multi-million transformation of the island into what’s now known as Perfect Day CocoCay.)
After sailing under the Royal Caribbean logo from 1990 to 2013, the ship was transferred to its Pullmantur Cruises division.
Royal Caribbean purchased Spain’s largest cruise line in 2006, and later sold a majority share (51 percent) of Pullmantur to an investment firm in Spain. Pullmantur Cruises filed for insolvency under Spain’s law last month. Insolvency is when a company can not pay its debts due to low or no income, typically leading to reorganization.
Carnival Cruise Line’s 1990-built Carnival Fantasy is also heading to Turkey to meet her fate. Carnival Corporation recently announced they are retiring 13 of its cruise ships, decreasing the fleet size by nine percent.
When Monarch of the Seas was launched in 1990, it was the world’s largest cruise ship, coming in at 73,937 gross registered tons.
Royal Caribbean continues to hold the title for the largest cruise ships with its four Oasis-class vessels (Symphony of the Seas, Harmony of the Seas, Allure of the Seas, and Oasis of the Seas). But the definition of “world’s largest” has changed significantly, with the new Symphony weighing in at over 230,000 gross registered tons.
Guests who were booked on the Monarch and any other Pullmantur vessels have been offered a cruise on Royal Caribbean or Celebrity Cruises. They can also opt for a full refund.
Featured photo via Flickr Creative Commons/mfnure31)