Last October 2018 P & O Cruises announced their decision that their oldest ship in the fleet – ORIANA has to leave the line in August 2019. In fact at the moment she’s during her final cruise.
The 1,880 passenger capacity liner joined the cruise line back in 1995 and will depart from Southampton, UK on the 16th August with only her new crew as it is rumoured she will be heading to Greece for refit.
The new owner of ORIANA is a joint venture company between China Travel Service (CTS) and China Ocean Shipping Group Company (Cosco), which recently purchased the 1995 built vessel from P&O Cruises of which she will start operating ex-China cruises around middle September 2019.
The disposal of ORIANA follows last year move of the ADONIA to operate as AZAMARA PURSUIT for Azamara Club Cruises. Her departure will allow P&O to focus on the remaining mid sized and larger ships as the fleet expands with IONA and her sister ship in 2020 and 2022 respectively.
With ORIANA as the smallest and oldest ship in the fleet, she will be replaced by IONA that is due to enter service in 2020 and will run on Liquefied Natural Gas; the second and unnamed 180,000 tonne ship is set to join the fleet in 2022, giving a 50% hike in capacity in five years.
P&O Cruises are represented in Malta by Malta Cruise Services, a division of Mifsud Brothers Ltd – www.mbl.com.mt
Above images are leaving Valletta in her buff funnel colours back to 24th October 2008 while the images with the Union jack painted on her bow are back to 4th November 2018.
Photos by Capt. Lawrence Dalli. Do not use these images without my permission. © All rights reserved. Malta Ship Photos & Action Photos – www.maltashipphotos.com