On Saturday 11th July, 2020 the cruise liner MONARCH left Marsaxlokk Harbour, Malta at 1946 hrs during her last voyage bound to breakers at Aliaga, Turkey.
She entered Marsaxlokk Harbour on Friday 10th July morning after several days drifting outside territorial waters (otw) for stripping and discharging of 400 pallets full of all valuable items including equipment; supplies; furniture etc and berthed at the West Quay of Malta Freeport Terminal 1.
There were various conflicting issues as first it was reported that with the demise of Spanish cruise brand Pullmantur last June it was revealed that MONARCH which was chartered to Pullmantur, will be transferred back to Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd (RCCL).
Pullmantur’s board of directors determined that the unprecedented impact of the Pandemic Disease COVID-19 made the action necessary. Pullmantur management notified employees of the decision after filings were made with Spanish authorities. Cruise Investment Holding and Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines have announced they have filed for reorganisation of their cruise brand Pullmantur. In a statement made on Royal Caribbean’s corporate website, the company explained they have filed for the reorganisation of their Pullmantur Cruceros joint venture under the terms of Spanish insolvency laws. Cruise Investment Holding owns 51 percent of the Spanish cruise line, while RCCL owns the remaining 49 percent.
Pullmantur had a fleet of three ships, with another vessel – Royal Caribbean’s GRANDEUR OF THE SEAS that was being planned to join in early 2021.HORIZON is a former Celebrity Cruises ship, while MONARCH and SOVEREIGN were both former Sovereign class ships which sailed for Royal Caribbean International.
MONARCH was laid up in Naples for cold storage and left in late June awaiting orders sometimes drifting up and down otw Malta. She was built in 1991 at the Chantiers de l’Atlantique shipyards in Saint-Nazaire, France as the MONARCH OF THE SEAS for Royal Caribbean Cruise Line (RCCL). She was the second from 3 ships of the Sovereign Class and at her time of her completion she was one of the largest cruise ships in the world with 73,941 as GT and passenger capacity of 2,744 passengers. As of 1st April, 2013 she started operations for RCCL’s Pullmantur Cruises brand trading as MONARCH. In her history she became the first major cruise ship in the world that had a Female Captain (Swedish) back in 2007.
And on Saturday 11th July, 2020 with pilot onboard at 1850 hrs she left her berth manoeuvring astern, turning smoothly to starboard and left Harbour making her the third liner to enter Marsaxlokk, 2 of them berthed.
On Sunday 12th July , 2020 at 2245 hrs she was 18.4 nautical miles from Kithira, Greece.
On Monday 13th July, 2020 at 0940 hrs she was 94.5 nautical miles off Aliaga, Turkey.
On Tuesday 14th July at 0825 hrs she was assisted by Turkish Pilot Boat SEFIKBEY together with port tender BARDAKOGLU to anchor outside Aliaga Bay awaiting her turn to be beached.
And today Wednesday 22nd July, 2020 between 0800 – 0900 hrs she was beached at Aliaga for breakers.
Watermarked Photos are by Capt. Lawrence Dalli. Do not use these images without my permission. © All rights reserved. Malta Ship Photos & Action Photos – www.maltashipphotos.com
Published – Wednesday 22nd July, 2020