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Ritz-Carlton assures ship will keep inaugural date despite reported delay

ritz launch oct. 10, 2018
The Ritz-Carlton newbuild is depicted after its traditional launch down the slipway on Oct. 10, 2018
The Ritz-Carlton Yacht Collection's inaugural sailing remains set for Feb. 5, company spokespersons said, despite a report from Spain about a shipyard delay and cost overrun.

La Voz de Galicia said Astillero Hijos de J. Barreras Shipyard notified the cruise line last week that it was seeking an additional €50m — pushing up the cost of the newbuild to €290m. In addition, the paper reported the yard raised the need to postpone delivery six months from the last reference date, Dec. 5.

There had always been time built in from delivery to the Feb. 5 inaugural in Fort Lauderdale, following a four-night mini-cruise from Florida that overlaps the Super Bowl (to be played Feb. 2 in Miami).

Possible €25m penalty?

La Voz de Galicia added such a delay could impose a sharp penalty to the shipyard, estimated at €25m.

'The Ritz-Carlton Yacht Collection inaugural sail is set for February 5th, as previously communicated,' Angela Composto, SVP sales & marketing, told Seatrade Cruise News, a sentiment echoed by the company's public relations agency.

They did not address additional emailed questions and said officials were traveling.

HJ Barreras did not respond to emails on Friday or Monday.

The keel was laid for Ritz-Carlton's 24,000gt, 298-passenger luxury yacht — still unnamed — on Jan. 11, 2018. A traditional launch down the slipway followed Oct. 10 last year.

On May 30, The Ritz-Carlton Yacht Collection firmed the order for a sister ship for delivery in 2021.

Havila project challenges

HJ Barreras is reportedly facing major challenges with its two Norwegian coastal ferry newbuilds for Havila.

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