Louis expands cruise fleet by acquiring Orient Queen

Louis plc acquired the cruise ship Orient Queen from Orient Queen Shipping Inc., the cruise line said.

In a release, Louis said that the acquisition was part of a Louis Group strategy to upgrade and expand its fleet and services.

The 15,781-ton Orient Queen underwent a $22 million refurbishment in 2005, Louis said. The ship accommodates 850 passengers in 370 cabins. Calling it a luxury vessel, Louis said its amenities include plasma TVs in the rooms, two swimming pools, Jacuzzis, a casino, several restaurants and lounges, a beauty salon, health center and a heliport.

Formerly Festival Cruises' Bolero, the vessel was built in 1968 by Germany shipyard Seebeck Werft. The Orient Queen recently made headlines when it helped evacuate U.S. citizens from Lebanon during Israel's war with Hezbollah. The ship ferried hundreds of people from Beirut to Cyprus.

With the addition of the Orient Queen, the Louis fleet has 13 cruise ships. Louis said that this addition enhances its position in the Mediterranean and enables the company to further establish its presence in the European cruise market.

To contact the reporter who wrote this article, send e-mail to Johanna Jainchill at [email protected].


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