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Is the lovely Astor being scrapped?

November 3, 2020 Cruise No Comments Email Email

Many Aussies will remember the lovely Astor as she has spent time down under, but it appears that as a result of the demise of CMV, Astor may be scrapped, with it reported but not confirmed, that she only achieved a sale price of only 1.7 million euros in the recent CMV vessel auction.

There is no doubt Astor is getting a tad long in the tooth, as she was built in 1987 at HDW in Kiel for Safmarine, as the larger successor ship of the first Astor, which became known in Germany as a TV Dream Ship with the first Astor built even earlier in 1980 at HDW in Hamburg for HADAG Cruise Lines.  After a few incarnations in the complicated world of cruising, the firsr Astor became Saga Pearl 2 and in 2019 she was sold to Aqua Explorer Holdings, which is located in the British Virgin Islands and apparently Currently, she is based at the Greek port of Perama, where she is recorded as being laid up and also is now known as Pearl II and is reportedly to be converted into a mega-yacht in Greece.

In February 2013, “new” Astor was chartered for three years by Cruise and Maritime Voyages (CMV) in a bid to fill the “gap” in the Australian market after the exit of Classic International Cruises and in December 2014, purchased her from its bankrupt owners, Premicon, planning to sail a winter 2015 season with CMV before briefly moving back to the fleet of Transocean Tours where she sailed a summer season from Germany before switching back to CMV for the winter 2016 season.

In 2019, CMV announced it would rename Astor as Jules Verne and would deploy the ship in the French market beginning in May 2021, however  CMV entered administration in 2020 due to COVID-19 and Astor was sold at auction by CW Kellock London on 15 October 2020 for a paltry amount.

We await news of her destiny along with many other classic and wonderful ships.

A report by John Alwyn-Jones

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