Carnival to deploy third ship in Long Beach, Calif.

By Johanna Jainchill
Carnival Cruise Lines will deploy a third ship from Long Beach, Calif, in 2014, expanding its West Coast short-cruise program.

The 2,052-passenger Carnival Imagination will operate three- and four-day cruises year-round from Long Beach beginning in January 2014. The Imagination will move from Miami, where it has been offering short cruises to the Bahamas and Western Caribbean.

The 2,052-passenger Carnival Ecstasy, currently sailing from Port Canaveral, Fla., will reposition to Miami to take the Imagination’s place.

Gerry Cahill, Carnival's CEO, said that Carnival is the only line to offer a year-round, short-cruise program from the West Coast, and that the sailings are especially popular with cruisers who drive to the port.

Carnival said it will carry approximately 550,000 guests annually from Long Beach in 2014, more than any other cruise operator.

The vessel will offer three-day cruises to Ensenada, Mexico, and four-day voyages to Catalina Island and Ensenada. The Imagination's sister ship, the Inspiration, will continue to offer similar three- and four-day cruises out of Long Beach.

Carnival’s seven-day Mexican Riviera and 15-day Hawaii itineraries, currently operated by the 3,006-passenger Carnival Splendor through February 3, will continue on the Carnival Miracle from October 2013 through April 2014.

Follow Johanna Jainchill on Twitter @jjainchilltw.
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