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Chinese start-up buys Sea Princess; V.Ships Leisure to manage ship

CRUISE_Charming.jpg
The former Sea Princess, shown with new livery and name, heading to China
V.Ships Leisure and sister company Oceanic Catering have been selected by China's Sanya International Cruise Development (SICD) for ship and hotel management of Charming, the former Sea Princess.

The handover of the 2,222-berth vessel took place in Manila this week, Per Bjornsen, CEO, V.Ships Leisure, told Seatrade Cruise News.

Mainly remote handover

The process, mainly remote due to COVID-19 travel restrictions and preventative measures, involved close cooperation between V.Ships Leisure’s shore-side team, officers and crew, SICD, Princess Cruises and the relevant authorities including class and flag.

Following the handover, implementation of V.Ships Leisure’s plug-and-play platforms has begun including installation of the electronic Safety Management System and the digital platform ShipSure 2.0, Bjornsen said.  This system will provide class data, aiming for flawless service delivery to start-up SICD.

The handover will also provide the new operator with access to V.Ships Leisure’s global crew network enabling the mobilisation of crew, even during the pandemic, to facilitate the handover, ‘underscoring V.Ships Leisure’s capability and resilience,’ Bjornsen noted.

In preparation for the launch of operations in 2021, V.Ships Leisure and Oceanic Catering will be working closely with the client to develop all aspects of the operation including the on-board hospitality concept and guest experience journey.

Follows Piano Land

Last year V. Ships Leisure was selected to manage Piano Land, the first ship owned by China’s Twinkle Travel Cruise, and homeported in Xiamen.

‘Being selected once again to manage the start-up of a cruise line in China highlights our unique capability to manage vessels locally with our highly experienced cruise-dedicated team in China. Our integrated ship and hotel management partnership model is proving ever more popular as it enables delivery of a unified ship and shore-side approach to safety culture and COVID-19 secure operations,’ Bjornsen said.

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