Orient Cruise Lines

Orient Cruise Lines

Orient Cruise Line was started in the year 1993. Though it didn’t run for a long time, Orient Cruise line was renowned for its performance. Its operating years were only till 1993-2008. It has a specialization of taking its passengers to exotic destinations. That is why it got its recognition. In 1998, Orient Cruise Lines was sold to Norwegian Cruise Lines but it continued operating under it. In March 2008 it completely stopped operating. Later in June, the brand was sold to new owners who planned to start the operations in 2009 April, but it never took off till now.

Orient Cruise Lines Information

Orient Cruise Lines Type Subsidiary
Orient Cruise Lines Industry Cruise line
Orient Cruise Lines Founded 1991
Orient Cruise Lines Founder(s) Gerry Herrod
Orient Cruise Lines Key People Wayne Heller
Orient Cruise Lines Parent Norwegian Cruise Line (1998—2000)
Star Cruises (2000—2008)
Origin Cruise Group (2008 onwards)
Orient Cruise Lines Website www.orientlines.com

Orient Cruise Lines History

In the year 1991, Gerry Herrod started Orient Lines as Shipping & General Ltd. He bought the first cruise from Far Eastern Shipping Company named Alexandr Pushkin. After buying the cruise he completely rebuilt the ship and named it Marco Polo. This was the start of Orient Cruise Lines in 1993. Since it was launched into the sea, Marco Polo got lot of recognition for its elegance and speed of travel.

In 1998, Norwegian Cruise Lines took over Orient Cruise Lines. The success of Marco Polo continued its success on the sea. But soon in 1999 NCL was itself take over by Star Cruises. The end of Marco Polo’s partnership with the NCL ended in 2007. It was sold to a Greece based company called Global Maritime. This was technically the end of Orient Cruise Lines as it did not replace Marco Polo with another ship.

Wayne Hellar who owned Origin Cruise Group, bought the brand of Orient Lines from Star Cruises on 27 June 2008.

Ships it Owned

Orient Cruise Lines didn’t have a big fleet of ships in its tenure. Though it was known for Marco Polo, there were 2 other ships which also sailed under the brand of Orient Lines.

Marco Polo

It has sailed for Orient Lines since 1993-2008 - the longest any cruise ship has sailed for this company. Originally known as Alexander Pushkin, it was built by the East Germany Company. It was built for the Baltic Shipping Company of Soviet Union. After many alterations in the ship it was renamed as Marco Polo. The destinations which Marco Polo has travelled are mostly in the Southeast Asia, Africa and Antarctica. Since 2005, it is the only Ivan Franko ship which is still there.

Crown Odyssey

It enter the fleet of NCL in the year 1996. When NCL bought Crown Odyssey, the cruise was renamed as Norwegian Crown. Later when NCL took over Orient Lines Norwegian Crown was again rebuilt and got its original name Crown Odyssey. The operations of Orient Lines stopped in 2003; it was transferred back to NCL with its name again changed to Norwegian Crown.

Marco Polo II

It was supposed to launch itself in 2008 but it never was open to the public till date. Maxim Gorky was the original name of Marco Polo II. When it was bought by the Orient Lines, it was named as Marco Polo II. It was supposed to sail in November 2008, but this did not happen. Due to the economic crisis which was running at that time, the sailing of Marco Polo II was postponed indefinitely. In the year 2009, the ship was sold as scrap and was beached at Alang India.

Orient Cruise Lines Ships

Orient Cruise Lines Ship Built In Service for Orient Lines Gross Register Tonnage Status as of 2009
Marco Polo 1965 1993—2008 22,080 GRT Since 2008 sailing for Transocean Tours
Crown Odyssey 1988 2000—2003 34,242 GRT Since 2008 sailing as Balmoral for Fred. Olsen Cruise Line
Marco Polo II Never Officially Named 1969 Never entered service 24,981 GRT Scrapped in Alang, India