Ambassadors Cruise Group acquired the first
preferred ship mortgage on the Columbia Queen river vessel and is
exploring the possibility of gaining the ships operating rights,
according to Joe Ueberroth, Ambassadors president and CEO.
the mortgage for $5 million from the U.S. Maritime Administration,
which had held it since 2004, when it sold the vessel to the
investor group CQ Acquisitions LLC.
operated the ship in 2005 under the brand Great American Journeys
but canceled its 2006 season. CQ Acquisitions still holds the
operating rights to the ship.
Previous to the
2004 purchase by CQ Acquisitions, the Columbia Queen had been held
under Marad control for three-and-a-half years following the
October 2001 bankruptcy of its then-owner, American Classic
The purchase of the
mortgage took place the same week Ambassadors closed on its
purchase of the Delta Queen Steamboat Co. and four months after
Ambassadors formed its cruise division and purchased the American
West Steamboat Co.
Both Delta Queen
and Great American Steamboat have previously attempted to buy the
reporter David Cogswell, send e-mail to [email protected].