Carnival Corporation & plc (NYSE/LSE: CCL; NYSE: CUK) has ordered a 71,300-ton cruise ship for its AIDA Cruises brand, which caters exclusively to the German-speaking market. The newbuild order is subject to financing and other customary closing conditions. It marks the seventh new ship that the German cruise operator has ordered in the past six years.
The 2,192-passenger vessel, which will be built at Germany’s Meyer Werft at an approximate all-in cost of €150,000 per lower berth, is scheduled to enter service in spring 2013.
The new vessel will operate under AIDA Cruises’ informal “club resort” cruise concept which is marketed exclusively to German-speaking clientele and offers a product aimed at younger, more active guests who enjoy a host of on-board innovations.
“With growth that is outpacing other regions of the world, expanding our European brands continues to be a priority for us. This new AIDA ship will build upon the brand’s leadership position in the fast-growing German-speaking market, while offering a unique onboard experience preferred by its clientele,” said Micky Arison, Carnival Corporation & plc chairman and CEO.
AIDA Cruises’ President Michael Thamm added, “It has always been our strategy to achieve sustainable growth. We look forward to another innovative newbuild, tailor made for the German market.”
The new vessel will join the 71,300-ton AIDAsol, set to debut in April 2011, and an as-yet-unnamed sister ship in June 2012.
AIDA Cruises revolutionized the German cruise market with the introduction of its first “club ships” in 1996. By 2013, a total of 10 “club ships” will be in service, operating voyages to the Mediterranean, the Canaries, the North Sea, the Baltic, the Caribbean, the Arabian Gulf, Asia and Central America.
Carnival Corporation & plc is the largest cruise vacation group in the world, with a portfolio of cruise brands in North America, Europe, Asia and Australia, comprised of Carnival Cruise Lines, Holland America Line, Princess Cruises, The Yachts of Seabourn, AIDA Cruises, Costa Cruises, Cunard Line, Ibero Cruises, Ocean Village, P&O Cruises and P&O Cruises Australia.