Acquisition underscores Grand Circle's commitment to expand its small ship fleet and itineraries to meet growing demand by Americans over 50 for small ships and small group travel.
BOSTON – Alan E. Lewis, Chairman of Grand Circle Cruise Line, the leader in small ship and river cruising worldwide, announced today that the fleet has acquired the 88-passenger M/V Tere Moana from Paul Gauguin Cruises for an undisclosed price. The acquisition will allow Grand Circle to expand its small ship itineraries and meet growing demand for small ship travel among Americans over 50. The Tere Moana joins Grand Circle’s fleet of small ships that Conde Nast Traveler readers rated among the Top 5 “World’s Best Small Ships” in 2014, including the #1 (M/V Artemis) and #2 (M/V Arethusa) ratings.
“Small ship travel, which for us means ships of fewer than 100 passengers, has become increasingly popular among Americans 50 and older because it offers ease of travel as well as access to small ports-and the places, people, and cultures beyond these ports-that are inaccessible to larger ships,” said Lewis. “We are delighted to have acquired the Tere Moana and to soon be able to offer travelers additional intercultural cruises for active travelers.”
Grand Circle Cruise Line’s acquisition of the Tere Moana supports Grand Circle’s efforts to grow its small ship operations worldwide, and it follows last year’s acquisition of the 98-passenger M/V Corinthian, now operating in Antarctica, South America, and Europe. Grand Circle’s other small ships include the award-winning, 4-star-plus 50-passenger sister ships-the M/V Artemis, Arethusa and Athena, which operate throughout the Adriatic and the Mediterranean.
The Terre Moana was built in 1998 and was last refurbished in 2012. Grand Circle Cruise Line will assume operations of the ship in the summer of 2016 and will make a significant investment to refurbish the ship to its unique style of small ship cruising designed for American travelers. As it does on all of the ships it owns, Grand Circle will operate the ship with its own nautical and hospitality crews.
The cruise line is considering relocating the ship to Asia/Southeast Asia and offering itineraries that explore Japan, Indonesia, Borneo, Sydney, Australia, and beyond. Three potential itineraries are The Best of Southern Japan & South Korea; Bali to Australia: Komodo Island & the Timor Sea; and Indonesia: Java, Bali, Borneo & Komodo Islands; however, exact destinations and itineraries are yet-to-be determined.
Grand Circle Cruise Line’s small ships are known for their small group size (24 to 98 passengers aboard a ship with 1 Program Director for every 25 passengers); outstanding local Program Directors (guides) and nautical and hospitality crew; and itineraries that connect travelers with locals through activities that include visits to homes, schools, markets, neighborhoods, and beyond. They also are known for exceptional value—providing a 4-star experience at a 3-star price, per diem rates typically $50-$250 less than other small ship cruise lines’, and free and low-cost single supplements for solo travelers.
The Tere Moana’s specifications are as follows: Passenger capacity: 88; Cabins: 44, all w/ocean views, dining room, lounge, five decks; Length: 330 feet (100.58 meters); Shipyard: Alstom Leroux, St. Malo, France; Gross Tonnage: 3504; Cruising Speed: 14 knots; Ship’s Registry: Bahamas; Built: 1998; Refitted: 2012.
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