Pearl Seas Cruises to build two luxury cruise vessels

Pearl Seas Cruises, a new offshoot of small-ship operator American Cruise Lines, signed contracts with Irving Shipbuilding in Halifax, Nova Scotia to build two new luxury cruise ships.

According to a statement, Pearl Seas said the two new ships will carry 165 and 210 passengers and would be ready for service in July 2008 and June 2009, respectively. The line also plans to build a third, larger ship, according to company spokesman Jamie Murrett.

To be flagged in the Marshall Islands, the first, 9,000-ton, 88-stateroom ship is currently under construction. The first ship will begin with international cruises in 2008 in the Canadian Maritimes, Newfoundland and New England and would reposition to the Caribbean later that year.

Each ship will offer a spa, a dining salon, several lounges and a library. Elevator access to all decks and three observation decks will be offered on each ship. All suites will be at least 240 square feet and will feature large opening picture windows and balconies; flat-screen, satellite TVs and DVD players; individual climate control; and Internet access.

Pearl Seas Cruises will pay agents 10% commission, and next week will unveil information for agents on its Web site, www.pearlseascruises.com.

To contact the reporter who wrote this article, send e-mail to Kristin O'Meara Hillmann at [email protected].

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