Royal Caribbean is saying sayonara to yet another of its older vessels.
The 23-ship company today announced the 19-year-old Splendour of the Seas will leave the fleet in April 2016. The 1,830-passenger ship is being sold to German line TUI Cruises, which in turn will lease it to UK-based Thomson Cruises.
The announcement comes just three months after Royal Caribbean said its 23-year-old Majesty of the Seas would leave the fleet in 2016.
Majesty is the oldest vessel currently operated by Royal Caribbean. Splendour is the line's third oldest vessel in operation.
Royal Caribbean says no scheduled sailings of Splendour will be affected by the sale. The ship's final voyage for Royal Caribbean will take place on April 4, 2016.
Unveiled in 1996, the 69,130-ton Splendour is the second of six Vision class ships the line built between 1995 and 1998 in what at the time was a rapid expansion of the brand.
The early Vision class ships have been eclipsed by ever-larger, more-amenity-filled mega-vessels, and by today's standards they're considered almost small. At 225,282 tons, Royal Caribbean's four-year-old Allure of the Seas and sister Oasis of the Seas are more than three times larger.
The transfer of Splendour comes just months after the unveiling of Quantum of the Seas, a new class of vessel at Royal Caribbean that also is being described as groundbreaking in the industry. With 16 public decks and room for nearly 5,000 passengers, Quantum is the third largest cruise vessel ever built (behind Allure and Oasis) and boasts such unusual new features as a deck-top ride into the sky and a bar with robot bartenders.
At 168,666 tons, Quantum is more than twice the size of Splendour.
Source: Gene Sloan (USA Today, "Royal Caribbean Says Goodbye to Splendour of the Seas", 3/2/15)
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Featured photo credit: Royal Caribbean Blog.com