Onsite: Oceania Cruises Details $1 Billion Ship Order

MIAMI-Oceania Cruises Wednesday morning at the Seatrade conference filled in the missing pieces of its announced $1 billion memorandum of agreement with Italy's Fincantieri shipyard for the delivery of two ships in the fall of 2010 and summer 2011. The new 1,260-passenger, 65,000-ton Oceania-class ships will mark a "new generation in the mid-size luxury class," said Frank Del Rio, Oceania's chairman and CEO. The ships represent an evolution of Oceania's Regatta-class ships, with larger staterooms that are 50 percent bigger than existing ones. Highlighted are two 2,500-square-foot duplex owner's suites, replete with outside hot tubs and private elevators. In addition, 93 percent of the rooms will have private verandahs and there will be 26 inside cabins. Dining will consist of six non-surcharge restaurants with open seating. Food and wine programs, along with cooking classes, will also be prominent on the new ships. Though the price tag to build the ships is steep, Del Rio said that price points would be the same as the Regatta-class ships. Del Rio said the first ship will operate European itineraries, while the second ship will be positioned in Alaska before redeploying to the west coast. Oceania will begin taking reservations for the new ships in 2009.

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